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$1.75 billion

October 4, 2010

A $1.75 billion bond sale has become the focus of a dispute that erupted late Friday afternoon, when the Christie administration abruptly called a halt to all work on state road projects beginning today. The work stoppage affects about 100 construction projects and 200 design contracts around the state.

Both Democrats and Republications accused their opposites of playing games for political advantage.

The Democratic legislature had been slow to approve the bond sale, which had been expected to put a temporary band-aid on the state’s transportation fiscal crisis by selling 1.25 billion bonds and refinancing about $500 million in existing Transportation Trust Fund debt. Democrats said they were reluctant to approve the sale until the administration came up with a long-term plan for the fund. Christie, as a result, called for the work stoppage saying the state had no money to pay for the projects until the sale was approved.

The Democrats called an emergency committee meeting to discuss the matter for Monday morning.

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