In a town hall meeting designed to discuss budget issues and the state’s spending plan for 2014, Governor Chris Christie was faced with questions from residents dealing with everything from legalizing marijuana to raising the minimum wage.
While he’s not budging on legalizing marijuana for recreational use, Christie said he’s willing consider more changes to New Jersey’s medical marijuana program to help children with a specific form of epilepsy, according to nj.com.
Addressing a crowd of approximately 500 at his 118th town hall meeting, this one in Fairfield Wednesday, Christie said, “I’m not going to do that on my watch,” according to the report.
Christie furthered his comments, saying, “If you want someone who will, you’re going to have to elect a different governor.” The governor said he believes legalizing the drug will send the wrong message to children in New Jersey.
State Senator Nicholas Scutari (D-Union) introduced legislation in March that would regulate growth and sale of marijuana, which, the bill says, would provide new tax revenue.
On the issue of finances, Christie also took aim at the potential of raising minimum wage at the federal level when he was asked by a student, the report says. Christie held the same stance he did in 2013, saying any raise should be done in increments and phased in over time.
"My concern is: It's one of those things that sounds really good," he said to the crowd, nj.com reported, “No one's against it. But we've got to deal with the realistic nature of our economy. It's not like we have some robust, exploding economy that's going to be able to support all this."
Christie also said the increase of New Jersey’s minimum wage as decided by voters, which includes automatic yearly increases based on inflation, was a “crazy way to do business,” the report said.
The Governor’s next town hall meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, April 15 at 11 a.m. at the Somerset National Guard Armory in Franklin Township. It will be Christie’s tenth meeting since the start of his second gubernatorial term.