(TRENTON) — Assembly Budget Committee Chairman Gary S. Schaer (D-Passaic) issued a multimedia package Wednesday commenting on testimony given to his committee by the state treasurer that New Jersey is projecting up to $200 million in additional revenues and the implications it could have on the state’s pension payment in June.
The multimedia package consists of Schaer’s commentary and audio and a transcript of same.
A clean copy of the audio file is available upon request.
A transcript of the chairman’s comments is appended below:
Assemblyman Gary S. Schaer (D-Passaic), Assembly Budget Committee Chair:
“Well the $200 million was found, if you will, as a result of revenue that came in beyond original projections. It’s welcome news. It’s wonderful news for the state; no one would deny it.
“The governor has stated that he would like to apply the $200 million to the pension plan, which is wonderful news.
“But one needs to look at that figure not so much as what it is but what it is not. The pension plan for this year is underfunded by $1.8 billion. $200 million being applied to the pension plan means that we are still underfunded by $1.6 billion.
“So, the issue for many of us is not the $200 million but rather the continuing deficit — the $1.6 billion which is not being contributed. So it’s good news and bad news.
“Again, we’re happy about the $200 million, overjoyed. But still it speaks to the question of this state’s obligations to meet its bills; to meet its legal responsibilities in so many areas.”