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May 06th
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Christie proposes a record $8.8 billion in school aid in 2012-13 state budget

The governor also proposed the creation of a division within the state Department of Children and Families that would “be the point of entry for all families with children with developmental disabilities – allowing them to benefit from a battery of services without having to be shuttled from agency to agency.” Christie said the concept is to treat the whole child and the whole family – in one place. The division would develop an integrated set of services – and for the families and provide a transition process through adolescence to adult services.

Christie said that to go with the state mandate that cities and town increase property taxes by no more than 2 percent, he is maintaining in the proposed budget the amount of state aid to municipalities that they received in the current budget.

The governor proposed that $350 million be used to keep businesses from leaving New Jersey while attempting to lure others to the state. The figure is a $150 million increase over the $200 million set aside in the current budget.

“I am presenting to you my budget for the Fiscal Year 2013,” Christie said. “The budget I propose would total $32.1 billion for the coming fiscal year. While this represents minimal growth from last year, it is still below the level of state spending when I took office (in 2010). This is in sharp contrast to the increase in state spending of 56 percent that occurred in the seven years between 2001 and 2008."

The governor also called for an increase of $89 million for the state Transportation Trust Fund to help finance road and bridge repairs and mass transit.

The state Department of Human Services budget would get a $10 million increase to help finance mental health care in communities rather than placing more people in state-run institutions. In an effort to cut the waiting list for housing for people with developmental disabilities, Christie proposed that an additional $24.7 million be provided to expand community placements.

Noting that state-run Hagedorn Psychiatric Hospital in Hunterdon County will close in June, the governor said the savings would provide an additional $5.6 million for the mental health services provided by the state Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services.

The governor also announced that Veterans Haven North, a facility for homeless veterans will open at the Hagedorn facility when the hospital closes.

“One final initiative I would like to call to your attention,” Christie said. “In my State of the State, I proposed to you that, for drug offenders who have not committed a violent crime, we require of them mandatory treatment instead of mandatory prison. i was clear that under this administration “no life is disposable.” Next week, keeping with that promise, I will announce the specifics of my drug treatment program for non-violent offenders.

"To underscore my commitment to this cause, I have included an additional $2.5 million in this budget to establish a mandatory drug court for nonviolent offenders in all 21 New Jersey counties,” the governor said. “This will begin to give us the resources to place these individuals in treatment through the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services – to make this program a reality. It is the first step toward reclaiming these lives and treating drug addiction for what it really is – a disease that can be conquered, but only with effective treatment.”

Comments (1)
1 Wednesday, 22 February 2012 03:05
Small Business Loans
The proposed raised amount is really a positive step and this will increase the quality of education.

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