Assemblyman Troy Singleton expressed his disappointment Monday over Gov. Christies’ veto of legislation he sponsored that would have required the state to apply a $300 million surplus towards a supplemental state appropriation for additional employer contributions to the state pension systems:
“Time and time again, pension payments have been the sacrificial lamb when the governor needs to close a budget gap at the end of the fiscal year. With a surplus now in hand, it only makes sense to apply it towards chipping away at the pension deficit, one that has only been made larger by the governor’s repeatedly reduced payments.
“Employees have continually stepped up and contributed more and more each year and the state must live up to its end of the bargain. Holding onto this cash makes it clear that the governor would rather claim our pension system a lost cause instead of chipping away responsibly at the deficit whenever possible.
“This is extremely disappointing and fiscally irresponsible,” said Singleton (D-Burlington).
The bill (A-4606) represented a down payment toward the statutorily required FY 2016 state contribution of $3.1 billion to the retirement systems, or 5/7 of the full actuarially determined annual required contribution.
Singleton noted that the Office of Legislative Services had identified an additional $300 million in revenue in FY 2015.