Byline: Daniel J. Munoz
The Murphy administration is releasing the remainder of $121 million in spending from the 2020 budget part of $235 million the governor froze in June amid intense opposition from lawmakers and accusations of political retribution arguing that Thursday's move was justified by strong state monetary performance.
In total, the money that Gov. Phil Murphy froze spanned dozens of items more than half of which was local aid for the state's most financially distressed cities when he signed the $38.7 billion budget on June 30. Murphy also nixed nearly $50 million from the state budget.
The treasury released the first batch of money, $114 million, in October, citing strong budget performances.State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio said in a Thursday statement that the state is slated to meet all of its revenue targets for December.
Murphy argued that theJune decision was necessary because his administration was not certain the revenue and savings projections that the Legislature sent him would pan out, especially without the millionaire's tax and a host of different fees on corporations.But legislative leadership accused the governor of twisting arms politically since many of the items he froze were related to Cooper University Health Care, where one of Murphy's biggest political...