July 3, 2012 — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Friday vetoed a bill (S 788) that would have provided $7.5 million for women's health programs, the Newark Star-Ledger reports (Rizzo, Newark Star-Ledger, 6/29).
Christie cut the funding in his first budget as governor, and Democrats in the Legislature have been working to restore it ever since. The cuts have prompted family planning clinics to reduce hours and eliminate services such as birth control, breast exams, Pap tests, sexually transmitted infection screenings and prenatal care. In 2011, Christie vetoed a similar bill (SB 2139).
This year's bill would have been funded by a fiscal year 2012 budget surplus. Christie has maintained that he opposes using state funds for family planning and women's health programs because of a lack of money (Women's Health Policy Report, 6/26).