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N.J. Budget Analyst Projects Less Revenue Than Christie

The New Jersey legislature’s chief budget analyst projects $309 million less revenue in fiscal 2015 than Governor Chris Christie assumes in his $34.4 billion spending proposal.

David Rosen of the Office of Legislative Services expects growth of 5.5 percent, compared with Christie’s forecast for 5.8 percent growth, according to remarks he prepared for a Senate budget hearing today. Fiscal 2015 begins July 1.

For three straight years, revenue has “fallen significantly short of the amounts certified,” Rosen said in the remarks. Collections over that period are $1.6 billion to $1.8 billion below the amount anticipated by Christie, a 51-year-old Republican who began a second term in January.

“Without the luxury of the revenue growth experienced elsewhere, you face even harder choices than your counterparts in some other state capitals,” Rosen said in the remarks for lawmakers.

Revenue from Internet gambling, which began in the state in November, may fall $148 million short of Christie’s budgeted estimate for the year ending June 30, Rosen said. He estimated only $12 million of revenue from the expansion, compared with the $160 million expected by the administration.

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