The state Legislature is aiming to send Gov. Phil Murphy its own spending plan by June 20, according to a top Assembly Democrat and a person close to discussions who requested anonymity.
“Our working timeline has been to try to get it done on the next voting session on [June] 20th,” Assembly Speaker Craig, D-19th District, told reporters earlier on Monday. “I talk to the Senate President and the governor’s office on a regular basis.”
The state Senate intends to keep to the same timeline, according to the person. The governor’s office did not return a request for comment.
Lawmakers and Gov. Phil Murphy have been at odds over the $38 billion spending plan, with many long-standing issues in state government recently caught up in budget talks. Any issues will have to be resolved by June 30 to avoid a government shutdown.
Murphy has pushed for a 10.75 percent millionaire’s tax, much to the opposition of legislative leaders, and has suggested that he would not sign a budget that did not include the tax.
Meanwhile, Senate President Stephen Sweeney, D-3rd District, has pushed for a series of so-called “Path to Progress” reforms that he wants passed before the budget deadline. He has argued the measures can reduce the state’s pension and health care obligations all the while reducing property taxes.
Murphy has been frosty on some of those proposals, such as one he said he sees as reducing public worker health coverage from equivalent of a platinum level of coverage under the Affordable Care Act to a gold level of coverage, and another to move certain public workers to a hybrid retirement scheme consisting of both a 401k-style plan and a defined pension benefit plan.
Lawmakers have also butted heads over the state’s multibillion-dollar Grow New Jersey corporate tax break program, which expires on June 30 and has fallen under intense scrutiny and criticism by the Murphy Administration. The governor said he wants to see the program expire when it lapses, and would rather that than let Grow NJ continue past its expiration.