GREENWALD DEMANDS CHRISTIE ADMINISTRATION DETAIL ALLEGED $35M CUT TO MVC COMPUTERS

(TRENTON) – Assembly Budget Chairman Lou Greenwald on Tuesday sent a letter to the treasurer asking him to explain the governor’s repeatedly false claim that Democrats cut $35 million in motor vehicle technology funds from the state budget.
The governor has used the inaccurate claim when trying to defend recent computer problems at motor vehicle agencies that have caused customer service woes. Democrats last week detailed how the governor’s claim was inaccurate, but Christie continued to insist upon it even still on Monday.
“As the Assembly sponsor of the FY 2012 Annual Appropriations Act, I know this is untrue,” wrote Greenwald (D-Camden) of the governor’s claim. “The Legislature did reduce General Fund technology funding by $5.5 million. However, nowhere in the materials received on the Governor’s proposed budget or during any of our hearings was there ever any indication whatsoever that any of this $5.5 million was to be used by MVC.”
In fact, the MVC chief told lawmakers that “a great amount of progress” had already been made in areas such as technology.
Greenwald also noted how the governor’s claim “defies logic” since the governor’s budget took $136 million in MVC revenue for other uses – $65 million more than in the prior fiscal year.
“If the Governor had wanted MVC to have additional funding for technology investments, he would have simply reduced the amount of the raid, rather than increasing it,” Greenwald wrote.
A July 13 press release from the governor’s office referenced the $5.5 million cut – not the supposed $35 million one claimed by the governor.
“I believe we need to clear this matter up,” Greenwald wrote to the treasurer on the governor’s claim. “To that end, please identify for me, by line-item name and account number, the $35 million in MVC technology funds that the Legislature supposedly removed from the budget. Additionally, on the $5.5 million in technology funds that were actually reduced, please provide any documentation from the budget process that indicates this money was to be used for MVC.”