Home > Uncategorized > A New Cover Story on the Open Space Diversion of $100 Million Of Environmental Funds

A New Cover Story on the Open Space Diversion of $100 Million Of Environmental Funds

How Did Cuts and Layoffs of This Magnitude Stay Under the Radar for So Long?

The debate I’ve been seeking on the open space Ballot Question #2 regarding the impacts of diverting funds from existing State parks and DEP environmental programs seems to be buzzing behind the scenes.

Reporters and editorial writers are looking into these issues as well.

So, in this fluid environment, I thought I’d report briefly on developments of significance or new information I come across.

I got a call earlier today from a longtime, well respected, and well placed conservationist, who wanted to ask me a few questions about my criticisms.

This person had called Board members and staff of KIG coalition member groups and asked for their response to my criticisms regarding the DEP & parks diversions, layoffs, etc

This person was told that early on, after Sen. Smith made an inquiry to DEP about use of the CBT, and after DEP refused to respond, then the KIG coalition members suspected and later assumed that the Christie Administration had diverted the CBT money into the General Fund!

This assumption appears to have morphed into some kind of urban myth.

See, if the CBT money was being diverted into the General Fund – just like Gov. Christie diverted over $1 billion of Clean Energy Fund revenues – then by definition there could be no harm to environmental programs or DEP if the CBT funds were diverted to open space.

Effectively, there would be no Peter for Paul to Rob.

I told this person that that story was not credible, because in April, during the budget review process, OLS asked, and DEP responded to, specific OLS question on the use of CBT money and DEP provided a written response.

I published those OLS questions and DEP responses in my prior post.

But this story could explain how they kept this whole set of issues quiet for so long – just accuse Christie of diversions and then KIG diversion for open space becomes a GOOD THING!

The truth will out on all this – the only question ┬áis whether its too late to influence the Nov. *4 vote.

[Note – * means technical error corrected]

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