TRENTON - Governor Jon S. Corzine today issued the following statement regarding the passage of the FY2010 State budget:
"I am gratified by the timely and decisive actions taken today by our Democratic partners in the Legislature to produce a balanced budget, and I will work just as hard in the next few days to thoroughly review the budget bills sent to my desk.
"I am especially pleased that Democrats in the Legislature delivered on the commitment I made last week that the more than $400 million in unexpected revenues from our successful Tax Amnesty Program be used to provide property tax relief for working families in New Jersey, including property tax rebate checks for more than 1 million homeowners.
"It is unfortunate that not one Republican member of the Legislature saw fit to support a budget that reduces state spending by 12 percent - an unprecedented downsizing - at the same time it responsibly protects spending on education and provides billions of dollars in much needed property tax relief.
"Even in the midst of this global economic recession, Democratic lawmakers joined me in facing up to the tough decisions and making the right choices.
"This budget, roughly $29 billion is almost $2 billion less than the first budget I introduced in 2006. We cut State spending by an unprecedented $4 billion. Virtually every state department, agency and authority experienced cuts ranging from shredding credit cards to eliminating entire programs to renegotiating the existing employee contract to save the state over $300 million in payroll.
"At the same time, this budget will maintain our priorities in educating our children, providing greater healthcare options and protecting seniors in addition to much needed property tax relief."