NJ Lawmakers Advance Open Space Funding Proposals | NBC 10 Philadelphia

NJ Lawmakers Advance Open Space Funding Proposals



    Competing proposals that would ask voters to fund open space acquisitions in different ways were approved Thursday by New Jersey lawmakers.

    The Assembly Budget Committee advanced a $200 million bond measure.

    The Senate Environment Committee moved ahead with a proposal to fund open space purchases for 30 years by dedicating a percentage of the sales tax.

    Lawmakers and environmentalists are split on which funding method is best.

    Proponents of borrowing say New Jersey can't afford to redirect up to $200 million from sales tax without shorting other programs and services.

    Proponents of long-term funding say increasing the state's debt load is not the most responsible way to pay for open space.

    Both sides agree that finding a sustainable source to buy land to keep it from being developed is a priority.