NJ Assembly, Senate pass bills to save Atlantic City from bankruptcy
New Jersey lawmakers have sent Gov. Chris Christie a package of bills to keep Atlantic City from running out of cash, throwing the financially strapped city a life preserver just before the unofficial start to summer.
The state Assembly and Senate on Thursday both passed a package of bills that give the city's government up to five months to devise a plan to balance its budget.
"If Atlantic City does what it's supposed to and substantially cuts its spending problem then we won't put a burden on people around the state," says Assemblyman Jon Bramnick.
Under the plan, Atlantic City will have about five months to come up with a fiscal plan for the future.
The plan comes after months of conflict between Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and Gov. Christie.
Prieto had blocked the earlier bill from getting a vote because he was against a state takeover of Atlantic City. He says that this compromised bill is better.
"It's not a five-month reprieve, it gives Atlantic City an ability to take care of their own house," Prieto says. "The other bill in the Senate was an immediate takeover from Day One, nothing else."
The governor says that he will decide quickly whether to sign or veto the legislation. He says it contains the authority he has been seeking.
The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.