Bills targeting Christie's beach trip passed by lawmakers

Posted: Updated:
TRENTON -

New Jersey lawmakers have approved a series of measures in response to this month's government shutdown and Gov. Chris Christie's beach trip during it.

The Democrat-led Legislature approved a measure Monday to pay state workers furloughed during the budget dispute. That now goes to the Republican governor's desk to approve.

The Assembly on Monday also approved two bills created because of the backlash to Christie's use of the governor's beach house, which is in a public park that was closed during the three-day shutdown.

One measure would force the governor's beach house to close during a shutdown. A second would keep state parks open during a shutdown.

Some New Jersey residents say that the governor’s actions during the shutdown showed a lack of empathy for the people of New Jersey.

“As the leader of the state you want people to follow suit,” says one resident. “You want people to follow suit…it kind of shows he used his power pretty much to utilize a beach that wasn’t open to the public.”

Other New Jersey residents applauded the legislation to pay the furloughed workers.

“Many Americans live paycheck to paycheck,” says Assemblywoman Elizabeth Muoio. “Three days of lost pay is a real struggle for many people…it was not their fault.”

Those bills still need to be debated in the state Senate and Christie would also have to sign the bills.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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