After scrambling to address revenue shortfalls during the early months of the coronavirus pandemic last year, Gov. Phil Murphy and lawmakers now find themselves in the exact opposite position this year.
The deadline for a new state budget is less than two weeks away, and still to be decided is how to best use a revenue windfall that totals more than $11 billion, counting state and federal dollars.
That’s a substantial sum for a state that’s been spending roughly $40 billion annually in recent years, and it gives the governor and lawmakers a rare opportunity to address a number of deep-seated fiscal challenges.
Budget negotiations are taking place behind closed doors right now, and a new spending bill is expected to be introduced within days.
Here is where the state’s revenue windfall is coming from: