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McKeon: NJ Transit Funding Must Be Priority in FY 18 Budget

Assemblyman John F. McKeon urged the Christie administration to prioritize funding for New Jersey Transit after receiving testimony from the state treasurer Wednesday during an Assembly Budget Committee hearing.

“Without an adequate, stable source of state funding, NJ Transit cannot deliver the high-quality service its passengers deserve,” said McKeon (D-Essex/Morris). “The derailment Monday is just the latest in a series of indicators of New Jersey’s need to invest in a transit system that hundreds of thousands of commuters rely on to get to and from work each day.”

State funding for NJ Transit denoted in the governor’s proposed Fiscal Year 2018 budget is less than half of the amount allocated for the state’s transportation system prior to the start of the Christie administration. McKeon noted that the administration’s pattern of using funds from the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the Clean Energy Fund has proven itself to be a short-sighted solution to an ongoing problem.

“Robbing other state agencies in order to plug holes in NJ Transit’s budget has just left those entities without needed funding for road improvements and environmental protection while failing to produce positive outcomes for mass transit passengers,” said McKeon. “Every commuter who’s ever stood on the platform anxiously waiting out a delay or sat in a motionless train while NJ Transit addresses electrical problems knows that this is unsustainable.”