What else could NJ use $12 million for?

The non-partisan Office of Legislative Services (OLS) projects the special election to fill the seat left by the late Senator Frank Lautenberg will cost $24 million. About half of that is unavoidable cost; we have to have a primary, so voters in both parties can choose a nominee. But by holding the Senate general election three weeks before we already have an election scheduled, New Jersey taxpayers will have to shell out an extra $12 million dollars. Christie doesn’t care what it costs. But taxpayers do. What else could we use $12 million for?American Bridge made this great little list for us:

  • Rebuild 1.3 miles of boardwalk in Asbury Park.

    USA Today, 12/5/12

  • Fund two months of food bank and soup kitchen assistance for areas affected by Hurricane Sandy

    Letter to Speaker Boehner From Office of the President, 12/7/2012

  • Pay for 150% the cost of rebuilding the Belmar City Boardwalk ($8 million)

    NPR, 5/26/13

  • Restore over half of Christie’s cuts to medical services for the elderly (he cut them $21M).


  • Pay for all of the non-profit grants awarded by the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund with nearly $1M to spare. Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, Viewed 6/4/2013

  • Entire cost of funding New Jersey’s Family Success Centers.

    Christie Announcement Of Family Center Funding, 10/9/12

  • Cost of funding New Jersey’s Cancer Education and Early Detection Program

    Office of the Governor, October, 2012

  • Cost of increasing local aid grants for improving street, safety and quality of life improvements by 15% (the state has spent $76.2M).

    NJ.com, 5/1/13

  • More than the entire budget of the Skills4Jersey Training Grant Program (it’s $11M).

    Notice of Grant Opportunity, Fiscal Year 2013

  • Brand new high tech fire trucks, police vehicles, ambulance vans, and other emergency management equipment, as recently granted by the federal government to Jersey City.

    NJ.com, 6/9/12

  • Restore the vetoed tax cut for Jersey Shore production, with $11.5M to spare.

    NYT, 9/26/11

  • Comments (7)

    1. Jeff Gardner

      Should we be unproud of NJ again if Christie actually gets away with this?

    2. vmars

      Why is the public paying for Democratic and Republican primaries anyway?  There’s no reason why these party structures can’t afford to build their own selection processes for a special election.

      I know the two parties are enshrined in our constitution, but … why?

    3. Rosi Efthim (Post author)

      I just arrived at the Buono primary party, and Majority Leader (and Blue Jerseyan) Loretta Weinberg just told me she quoted from this list at the event just before I got here.

    4. Dvd Avins

      Looks like a favor to folks who hand out the jobs in those places where it’s not hard to fill them.


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