Gov. Chris Christie signs his first budget into law

? Governor Chris Christie (R?N.J.) signed his first budget into law today at a firehouse in South River.

Early this morning, lawmakers passed the $28.3-billion budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1. Federal stimulus funds push the total budget for the upcoming fiscal year to $29.4 billion.

The bare-bones budget cuts $820 million in aid to schools, suspends property tax rebates and trims programs and services for students and the poor.

Christie said early this morning that he is proud of the budget which closes an $11-billion state deficit. Democrats say the budget shortchanges the most vulnerable residents while exempting the wealthy.

The state?s fiscal year starts this Thursday.

Related Stories:

GOP opposition delays NJ budget vote NJ Senate committee passes budget bill Work remains on fragile NJ budget deal Tentative deal reached over NJ budget Court upholds NJ governor's 2010 school cuts Thousands rally in NJ against budget cuts NJ voters reject majority of school budgets NJ gov talks up tough-love budget

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