N.J. gov­ern­ment shut­down af­fects parks and fer­ries


New Jersey res­i­dents were feel­ing the im­pact as a state gov­ern­ment shut­down took ef­fect Satur­day, shut­ter­ing parks and other public sites and dis­rupt­ing ferry ser­vice to Lib­erty and El­lis is­lands.

Among those af­fected were a group of Cub Scouts forced to leave a state park camp­site and peo­ple try­ing to ob­tain or re­new doc­u­ments from the state mo­tor ve­hi­cle com­mis­sion, among the agen­cies closed by the shut­down.

Mean­while, Gov. Chris Christie (R) and the Demo­cratic leg­is­la­ture re­turned to the state­house Satur­day to try to re­solve the shut­down, which came about af­ter lead­ers failed to reach an agree­ment on a new bud­get by Fri­day night’s dead­line.

Andrew Spears, a leader with Cub Scout Pack 124 in Tin­ton Falls, said his group was told to leave Cheese­quake State Park on Satur­day morn­ing.

Lib­erty State Park was closed, forc­ing the sus­pen­sion of ticket sales and ferry ser­vice from the site to the Statue of Lib­erty and El­lis Is­land.

Also closed was Is­land Beach State Park, where the state owns a res­i­dence the gover­nor can use. Christie had said he was plan­ning to be there for the Fourth of July hol­i­day, but on Fri­day he said he would stay in Trenton if the gov­ern­ment shut down but his fam­ily would still go to Is­land Beach.

Asked Satur­day if it was fair for his fam­ily to be able to use the park while oth­ers couldn’t, Christie was de­fi­ant. “The gover­nor has a res­i­dence at Is­land Beach,” he said. “Oth­ers don’t. That’s the way it goes. Run for gover­nor and you can have the res­i­dence.”

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