Contact Us
Make My Homepage

Do You Care If NJ Government Shuts Down This Year? [AUDIO]

What’s the worst that could happen if the State shuts down because lawmakers and the Governor can’t agree on a budget deal before the midnight June 30 constitutional deadline?

Stacy Proebstle, Townsquare Media

The answer to that question depends on your unique viewpoint. If you’re in State Government it could be that people might not notice the shutdown and start asking, “Why do we need so much government in the first place?”

In 2006, the state shut down as then-Governor Jon Corzine and his fellow Democrats in the legislature fought over Corzine’s proposal to increase the State sales tax from 6% to 7%. Lottery ticket sales stopped. Motor vehicles agencies closed. Car inspections were suspended. State run parks and beaches were off limits. Parts of the judiciary were halted and, most importantly casinos were forced to close.

Non-essential government employees were sent home, but they were later paid for their time off when an agreement was reached about a week later.

A law passed quickly after the 2006 shutdown allows casinos to stay open in the event of another budget stalemate that goes past the deadline.

Sure, the other above-mentioned services would again be on hold in another shutdown, but you do have options. Mega millions tickets could still be purchased in neighboring states. If you get your license renewed or car inspected now, Motor vehicle Commission office closures probably wouldn’t impact you. There are plenty of non-State-run parks and beaches you could visit.

“Most people can probably get along for a considerable amount of time before they notice that the state is shut down,” says Fairleigh Dickinson University political science professor Peter Woolley. “I think a lot of New Jerseyans wouldn’t miss the State government, at least for week.”

Woolley says it’s only when checks stop coming in that people get hurt. Those could include reimbursements for hospital services and non-profit organizations that are subsidized by the State.

Bad news for non-essential state workers; you are likely to be sent home if the State shuts down and it’s highly unlikely Governor Chris Christie would decide you should be paid after a deal is reached.

Woolley says, “Most people would be quick to point out that government can be cut back and people can get along without it more than they think.”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of NJ101.5

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for New Jersey Insiders quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive New Jersey Insiders contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.