New Jersey state government shut down at midnight Friday night after lawmakers failed to pass a nearly $35 billion budget and avert a state government shutdown.
Gov. Chris Christie called for a special session of the New Jersey State Legislature on Saturday at 11 a.m. and blamed Democratic State Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto for failing to reach a deal.
“He has not asked, either formally or informally, for the opportunity to address that session. The Governor has no idea why the Speaker is denying him the right to give a speech that he hasn’t even asked to give,” the statement said. “The Governor has called the session not to give speeches but to try to work to convince the Speaker to reopen the government that the Speaker has closed tonight. The Governor will be here early tomorrow to continue to work for the people of New Jersey.”
Christie also declared a state of emergency and maintained that essential state government services would remain in place. State police, correctional facilities, key child welfare facilities, state hospitals and treatment facilities, NJ TRANSIT, and operations linked to health, safety and welfare will be maintained.