PRESS RELEASE October-24-2018

Sweeney Pursues Work of Economic & Fiscal Policy Group

Participates In Multiple Forums on ‘Path to Progress’


TRENTON – Continuing to advance the work of the blue ribbon panel Economic and Fiscal Policy Workgroup, Senate President Steve Sweeney participated in multiple forums where he discussed the reforms of the “Path to Progress” report that will help to restore responsible finances and avert economic calamity. Senator Sweeney joined in a Town Hall Meeting at Montclair University, spoke to members of the business community in Ocean County, and hosted a roundtable discussion in Toms River with public officials.


In addition to discussing the proposals to address soaring pension and benefit costs, hold down property taxes, make government and school districts more efficient, assess the efficiency of our tax structure and leverage state assets, the forums gave Senator Sweeney the opportunity to gain the input of employers, government officials, educators, students and local residents.


“The 25 members of the study group devoted their hard work and expertise to develop a report with recommended reforms needed to restore financial stability at all levels of government so that we can avert a fiscal crisis and put New Jersey on a Path To Progress,” said Senator Sweeney. “I welcome a lively debate on the recommendations and the constructive input of those who have a shared desire to have New Jersey grow and prosper.”


  • On Monday night, Senator Sweeney joined with Brigid Harrison, Professor of Political Science and Law at Montclair University, for an interactive Town Hall Meeting with more than 75 participants at MSU’s new School of Communications and Information Sciences in Montclair. The discussion included the depth of the state’s budget problems, government cost savings, support for special education, and state aid for colleges, especially those with rising enrollments, such as Montclair University.


  • Tuesday morning, Senator Sweeney was the guest speaker at the New Jersey Business & Industry Association’s meeting of the Ocean County Employer Legislative Committee in Toms River, where the topics included pensions and benefit reforms, shared services, the need to hold down taxes, and the opportunity to leverage state assets to stabilize the pension system.


  • Also on Tuesday, Senator Sweeney led a roundtable discussion with municipal officials from throughout Ocean County and other members of the economic and fiscal study group. The topics included soaring pension and benefit costs, the need to hold down property taxes, to make state and local government and school districts more efficient, assess the equity and efficiency of our state and local tax structure and mitigate the negative impact of the federal tax law that targeted high-cost states.


The Economic and Fiscal Policy Workgroup held its initial organizational meeting on January 30, 2018. Over the course of months, the Workgroup held meetings that included presentations by policy experts on critical issues and robust discussion of the pros and cons of potential solutions. The Workgroup issued its report and recommendations on August 9, 2018.