TRENTON -- Anyone whose Fourth of July reservations at a New Jersey-run recreational site were broken by the three-day state government shutdown will receive a refund, according to the Department of Environmental Protection.
The department's website says it could take several weeks for credit card reservations to be refunded, and those who paid by cash or check will have to follow up with their specific park office.
All state-run parks, recreational areas, forests, camping areas, historic sites and beaches were shuttered when lawmakers failed to pass a budget in time for the July 1 start of the fiscal year.
Visitors who had planned weekend getaways at the state's recreational sites were shocked on Saturday to find them closed to the public. Settled campers were forced to pack up and check out early.
The state Legislature passed the new fiscal year budget in the wee hours Tuesday. Gov. Chris Christie signed it and called an end to the shutdown in time for beaches and other facilities to reopen for Independence Day.
The state park service apologized on its site for "the interruption and disappointment that temporary shutdown caused."