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(TRENTON) – Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-Gloucester/Cumberland/Salem), Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic), Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono (D-Middlesex), Assembly Majority Leader Joseph Cryan (D-Union), Senate Budget and Appropriations Chairman Paul Sarlo (D-Bergen) and Assembly Budget Chairman Lou Greenwald (D-Camden) released the following statement Monday on Gov. Chris Christie’s proposed “tool kit” legislation:

“We always welcome ideas to try to control government costs and property taxes, but we expect a reasonable, intelligent and in-depth discussion based on facts.

“Our success in working with the governor earlier this year on pension reforms shows how the best results come from bipartisan teamwork.

“But the fact is that this so-called tool kit, if enacted today, would do nothing to stop the property tax increases and fee hikes on senior citizens and the middle-class that Gov. Christie has proposed in his budget plan.

“Our focus right now is on saving senior citizens from Gov. Christie’s plan to increase their prescription drug costs while slashing their property tax relief. Protecting senior citizens from these unfair and brutal cuts is our emphasis.

“We will examine the governor’s plan, take what’s in it and try to make it better, and we will do so with a thoughtful and thorough approach. Based on his flawed executive orders, Gov. Christie certainly knows first-hand the problems that occur when policy is rushed, so we are hopeful he is willing to work with us.”

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