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New Jersey PBA president Patrick Colligan.

State PBA president backs Murphy borrowing plan

Colligan: Bond act will stop police cuts

By Nikita Biryukov, May 29 2020 10:25 am

The New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association is on board with Gov. Phil Murphy’s borrowing plan.

“I am strongly endorsing the COVID-19 Budget Recovery Bond Act because it will eliminate the need for politicians to make law enforcement the villain in the coming narrative about revenue holes and budget shortfalls,” NJSPBA President Pat Colligan said. “Right now, people are appreciative of the work our members do every day to keep our streets and our neighborhoods safe, but we have seen in the recent past what happens when the threat subsides and difficult financial decisions need to be made.”

Murphy is pushing a bill that would allow the state to borrow up to $5 million to shore up its budget amid a virus-fueled recession that has already drained the state’s surplus and rainy-day fund.

Support for the plan appears to have grown in the days ahead of a June 4 Assembly Committee vote on the measure.

On Thursday, Politico New Jersey reported Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo had backed the plan and was whipping support for it among his county’s local officials.

Last week, the New Jersey Globe first reported Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin had also signed onto the governor’s proposal, though Senate President Steve Sweeney has been less willing to offer it his support.

“Providing the state the ability to borrow federal funds with strong oversight is critically important as we all begin to look over the horizon towards what will certainly be one of the most bleak financial periods in New Jersey history,” Colligan said. “Refusing to put this mechanism in place would be a serious misstep that will have long-term, far-reaching consequences for not just every member of law enforcement, but also every New Jersey resident.”

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