To close a deficit that he asserted was approaching $11 billion, Governor Christie called for the layoffs of 1,300 state workers, closings of state psychiatric institutions, an $820 million cut in aid to public schools, and nearly a half-billion dollars less in aid to towns and cities. He also suspended until May 2011 a popular property-tax rebate program, breaking one of his own campaign promises.
The budget would probably mean higher property taxes for most homeowners, at least in the short term, as local governments try to make up for the diminished state financing. But the governor is also proposing constitutional amendments and legislation to cap property taxes and spending at the local, county and school-district level.
But don't worry. The Fighting Democrats still control the state congress, right?
Democrats greeted this with dismay, while vowing to work closely with the governor on the budget