On Thursday, Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation that authorizes state borrowing of $9.9 billion without the need for voter approval. The measure, sought by the governor in response to the fiscal challenges created by the coronavirus pandemic, gives a special committee of four state lawmakers power to determine the fate of the emergency borrowing.
Republican lawmakers, critical of the borrowing plan, have already filed a lawsuit to try to block it. Dissent against the bill was also expressed Thursday by some Democratic lawmakers, members of the Legislative Black Caucus. They wanted more diversity within the four-person panel that will decide how the money is spent. Members in both houses tried to amend the bill, requesting that Black and Latino lawmakers be represented on the panel, but that attempt failed. State Sen. Nia Gill, who was among those pushing for diversity, explained her concerns in an interview with Briana Vannozzi of NJTV News.