GOP Gov. Chris Christie wants $40M to build scaffolding in New Jersey
NEW YORK — Republican Gov.
Christie on Tuesday announced a $40 million package to build hundreds of thousands of scaffolding to protect a New Jersey state park that has been the site of several attacks, including a shooting last year that killed three people.
The governor, speaking at a press conference, called the construction of the 1,000-foot-tall scaffolding at the Blue Ridge Parkway the most important project of his administration.
The Blue Ridge project, which has been in the works for a decade, is one of several in the Garden State to benefit from federal money.
The other projects are to protect the New York City subway system, New York’s East River and the Hudson River.
New Jersey is in the midst of a three-year trial for a federal gun-control law that is facing challenges in federal court.
The state has been one of the states that have resisted the measure.
Christie has been vocal in his opposition to the law and has said he would veto any law that restricts gun ownership.
On Tuesday, Christie’s office announced a similar $10 million package would be used to secure another park.
Christie called the Blue Hill Park project “the most important park project of the administration,” saying it would be a key piece of the governor’s legislative agenda.
The governor’s office also announced $2.5 million to provide $40,000 in grants for an environmental consulting firm to conduct environmental assessments and other projects.
Christie also announced an additional $2 million in funding for environmental projects, including $500,000 for the construction and repair of a 1,200-foot high, steel-reinforced concrete structure at the park.
“New Jersey’s state parks are in danger of being destroyed by the rising tide of gun violence,” Christie said in a statement.
“We need to make sure that we protect our state parks and make sure they remain a place where people can feel safe.”
The park is home to some of the most prominent locations in New York and New Jersey, including the New Jersey Turnpike and the Jersey Shore.
Its designation as a federal sanctuary for the mentally ill has prompted some to call for its closure.
The sanctuary designation has not stopped federal authorities from trying to detain and deport those deemed dangerous by federal authorities.