The state Local Finance Board Wednesday approved $12 million in special municipal aid for Newark.
Gov. Jon Corzine ignored a request by the five Republican members of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee to have the vote postponed. The senators cited concerns the aid was being rushed to approval without public input and complained that city officials do not follow state statutes for the use of the money.
Lisa Ryan, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Community Affairs, which oversees the board, said Newark will use the aid to avoid instituting additional furlough days for city employees, an action designed to avoid interruptions of municipal services."The aid will also be used to avoid a substantial property tax increase,'' Ryan said.
The DCA is presently reviewing Newark's proposed $590 million 2009 budget.
In the 2009-10 state budget, Corzine cut $32 million in regular state aid to 546 cities and towns. Another 20 towns received the same amount as in 2008-09. Overall, towns had their aid cut by 0.5 percent to 3.5 percent. Newark received $45 million in state aid in 2008-09.