New Jersey Governor Christie Eliminates Global Warming Fund

Published June 13, 2010

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) is eliminating a $65 million global warming fund and redirecting the money to help reduce the state’s $10 billion deficit. The funds had been allocated to programs associated with the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a compact with multiple Northeastern states to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Example for Other States
Christopher B. Summers, president of the Maryland Public Policy Institute, says Maryland should follow Christie’s precedent and cut its spending on Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative programs.

“I believe it’s an absolute waste of taxpayer money,” Summers said. “State governments are using precious few resources on these programs when the majority of the states are already running a deficit. This is not just a waste of taxpayer money but [also] bad prioritizing of where tax dollars are spent in a state.”

Shaun Fink, executive vice president of the Ceasar Rodney Institute in Dover, Delaware, says he would like to see Delaware follow New Jersey’s lead.

“In trying to develop Delaware’s future economy as a green economy, our governor [Jack Markell (D)] would make Delaware completely dependent on government subsidy jobs. Such an economy is inefficient and uneconomical and thus cannot exist in the free market,” Fink said.

Not Far Enough?
The New Jersey chapter of Americans for Prosperity (AFP) has aggressively criticized Christie’s decision, claiming it does not go far enough in eliminating global warming programs.

“Whether the revenue from the cap and trade program is applied to global warming projects or to the general fund, the program will persist and consumers will still be burdened with an energy tax that will damage the economy and cost jobs,” New Jersey AFP communications director Mike Proto said.

“Opponents of cap and trade should not be satisfied that revenues are not being dedicated to global warming programs,” Proto added. “To do so is a disservice to the movement and enables the radical environmentalists who are pushing the destructive green agenda.”

Krystle Russin ([email protected]) writes from Texas.