Phil Murphy

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Gov. Murphy, Senate Leader Continue To Spar Over Budget

July 08, 2019 - 7:21 pm

TRENTON (WCBS 880) — Gov. Phil Murphy signed the 2020 budget last week, but the fight between him and Senate President Stephen Sweeney is far from over.

While Murphy abandoned his fight for a Millionaire’s Tax on the 2020 budget, he continued the fight with Sweeney, promising to take actions of “fiscal responsibility.”

Without the tax, the Democrat has authorized spending freezes statewide to make up the difference.

His office put together a list of line-item vetoes and money that will be impounded, totaling $235 million.

It includes $27 million that will be diverted from Cooper University Hospital, which is in Sweeney's district.

Still, Murphy says the decision it's not political and is instead part of the list put together by his budget office.

“At the end of the day, I have to be the adult in the room that says we don’t have the money to finance these right now. I'm hoping expenses will be saved or get more revenues or we'll find new revenue stream,” the governor said.

Meanwhile, Sweeney wrote an op-Ed slamming the administration, saying while it may approach the state budget as a way to settle political scores, the Legislature uses it lay out specific priorities.

Sweeney used it as an opportunity to call out for pension and benefits reform again.