The New Jersey Senate has voted to put an open space preservation question to voters in November.Thirty-six of 40 senators approved a resolution Thursday placing the question on the fall ballot. It would ask voters to dedicate a fraction of the sales tax to open space and historic preservation.

If approved, the constitutional change would dedicate about $200 million a year to open space preservation, for 30 years.

It would provide a sustainable source of funding for preservation by dedicating a portion of taxes that are already being collected.

Critics say other programs would be shortchanged as a result of the diversion of money.

The state is out of preservation funding.

The Assembly must still approve the resolution, with at least 48 of 80 votes, before recessing at month's end.


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