Hearing delayed in latest New Jersey pension lawsuit
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- A state judge on Monday delayed the latest court arguments over whether Gov. Chris Christie's administration has to contribute more toward pensions for New Jersey public workers.
Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson said in an order that she is waiting to hear from the state Supreme Court on a related case. Jacobson is considering whether the state must contribute more next year.
Christie has proposed using $1.3 billion in state money on the pension fund. That would be the biggest state contribution ever, but still far short of the $3.1 billion called for in a 2011 pension overhaul law.
Unions say the workers have a contractual right to that funding.
The administration of Christie, a Republican who is considering running for president next year, says that's not the case. One state lawyer called the pension law "aspirational," and that the state would not have the money to contribute more without raising taxes.
Christie says he will not increase taxes.
Jacobson had previously ordered the governor and Legislature to add funding for the current fiscal year. The Supreme Court is considering Christie's appeal of that ruling from February. The top court held oral arguments last week and is expected to rule before the fiscal year ends on June 30.
In Christie's town hall events in New Jersey this year, he has been making his case for another pension and benefits overhaul.
On Tuesday, union members are planning a rally in Trenton to take their side of the story to the public.
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