Christie says he’ll restore $100M for state workers

Here’s a story from Business Insider that’s been flying around media this week: Gov. Chris Christie is seeking $100 million in state funding to protect at-risk state workers from losing their jobs under a new government rule.

New Jersey is currently in the process of reforming the workers’ compensation system after a state judge ruled against a veto from Christie. The state supreme court gave him one more shot to change the law before requiring the state to hand over funding to protect workers.

According to Business Insider, Christie says he plans to issue an executive order when he returns from a tour of South American countries Friday that would restore funding for the at-risk workers. The move would slow down the process of restructuring New Jersey’s workers’ compensation system, preventing the governor from extending the state Supreme Court ruling all the way through the local courts before re-funding workers.

A Christie spokeswoman told Business Insider that no decision has been made and the Governor is considering “all options.” CNN has not independently confirmed the report.

The governor has made restoring funding for the at-risk workers a key part of his budget proposal and New Jersey’s state Senate President Stephen Sweeney has offered to broker a deal.

Christie became infamous as a strident budget cutter who cut $2.4 billion from the state’s budget, slashing more than 1,000 state workers without compensation and pushed controversial privatization programs such as a failed program to privatize New Jersey’s Motor Vehicle Commission. He said he intended to significantly cut spending and get the state back in shape to compete with neighboring New York.

At the end of his second term, he left the state with about $27 billion in debt.

A vote on Christie’s successor, Democrat Phil Murphy, who was also anti-union, is now underway. He took office in January after defeating Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, a top Christie lieutenant during his tenure.

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