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Assembly Democrats: Governor Must Realize that Public Safety for all New Jerseyans is a Priority

Mainor, Connors, Cryan and O’Donnell Call on Governor to Make Public Safety a Priority After His Municipal Aid Cuts Weakened Police Forces in Cities Across State

(JERSEY CITY) – Assembly Democrats released the following statements after hearing testimony during Wednesday’s Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee hearing in Jersey City:
Assembly Law & Public Safety Chairman Charles Mainor (D-Hudson):
“We have seen the consequences of the governor’s municipal aid cuts and they are not pretty. Police departments in Newark, Paterson, Trenton, Camden and Atlantic City have suffered dramatic losses in manpower, despite steep crime rates that demand the opposite. It’s a dangerous situation to put our residents in, and our police officers and firefighters who are now expected to do their jobs with less reinforcement. Fiscal responsibility is a must, but not at the expense of public safety.”
Assemblyman Sean Connors (D-Hudson):
“Crime is a daily nuisance for many residents in our urban centers. The crime stories we read and discuss? They live them. The governor has slashed funding for indispensable services. His municipal aid cuts led to police layoffs and uncertainty for residents. Public safety is our priority and should be the priority of this administration. Maybe the governor should visit these communities more often. Maybe then he will understand what his budget cuts really mean for these neighborhoods.”
Assemblyman Joseph Cryan (D-Union):
“Cities have had to rely on tactical support from the state police, which may see its own funding cut under the governor’s proposed budget. Municipal aid cuts in these cities were followed by vast police layoffs, increased crime and a shift in proven policing strategies to make up for the gap in coverage. What will these proposed cuts to the state police bring? Governor, proclaiming a comeback means nothing if people don’t feel safe because your budget cuts resulted in fewer cops on the beat.”
Assemblyman Jason O’Donnell (D-Hudson):
“Residents in New Jersey should feel safe in their homes, regardless of where they live. Giving cities with significant crime no other choice but to downsize their police forces shows the governor’s lack of apathy for the state’s most vulnerable. He has slashed funding for schools, women’s health care and public safety, yet manages to fund income tax breaks for millionaires. There won’t be any real recovery in New Jersey if the governor keeps undermining New Jersey’s working class.”