Press Release
Senator Declan O'Scanlon Senator Declan O'Scanlon (R-13)
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Contact: Brad Schnure / (609) 847-3600
June 29, 2018
O’Scanlon to Introduce Bills to Keep Traffic Moving, Protect Economy in Event of State Government Shutdown

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Measures Would Allow Racetracks to Operate & Road Construction Projects to Continue

Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) will introduce a pair of bills to keep traffic moving and protect the New Jersey economy from harm in the event of a State government shutdown.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon will introduce a pair of bills to keep traffic moving and protect the New Jersey economy in the event of a State government shutdown. (Pixabay)

“Traffic across most of New Jersey is bad enough without forcing work crews to abandon road construction projects while Trenton Democrats debate competing tax increase proposals,” said O’Scanlon, a member of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee. “Ensuring that road repairs can be completed and lanes reopened quickly is not just a matter of convenience, it’s also important for public safety.”

In the event of a shutdown, the legislation requires safety inspections of existing transportation infrastructure and newly constructed transportation infrastructure that are funded by the New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund Authority to continue to be funded.

“The construction workers are private contractors, so they have no issue staying on site and moving projects forward. Also, the cost of demobilizing is a significant expense,” said O’Scanlon. “To force that expense for a shutdown of a few days or weeks would only add to the costs of these projects. I’m glad to join Assembly Republican Leader Bramnick in this effort.”

The legislation directs that all State employees that have been designated as necessary to conduct safety inspections are to be considered essential personnel.

Similarly, the second bill proposed by O’Scanlon would ensure that State gaming regulators could stay on the job at racetracks in the event of a shutdown.

“The Attorney General has indicated that all racetracks in New Jersey would be forced to close if the State shuts down on July 1st,” said O’Scanlon. “That closure would impact the new sports betting lounge that finally opened at Monmouth Park this month after long delays, right before the extremely important 4th of July weekend. It’s insane that we would allow harm to our local economy by closing facilities like Monmouth Park, which also generate substantial tax revenues in support of the State budget under debate.”

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