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(TRENTON) – Assemblyman Gordon Johnson (D-Bergen) made the following statement Wednesday on the Assembly Democratic budget proposal:

“The last few weeks have been a formidable exercise in fiscal and social responsibility.”

“Today, I believe we have a budget that honors the values of this body, strikes a balance between frugality and humanity and protects the rights and interests of all of our residents.”

“This budget concedes that the sacrifices so often cited by the Governor should also extend to the state’s wealthiest residents, rather than be heavily shouldered by our poor and working families.”

“It ensures families without the means to afford expensive private health insurance will have access to health care for themselves and their children.”

“It ensures that CASA will continue to advocate for the best interests of abused or neglected children.”

“It ensures that low income families who can’t afford it will be able to procure legal services.”

“It ensures students will have the opportunity to pursue a higher education and realize the American dream by restoring funds to the Educational Corporation Fund.”

“It ensures AIDS patients will still have access to life-saving drugs.”

“It ensures blind students will receive an education equal to their peers.”

“It ensures that women will have access to the care and resources that will allow them to continue to provide for their families.”

“This budget restores essential programs and resources, and restores faith that ideology over humanity will never make for good policy.”