Trenton, NJ – Governor-Elect Chris Christie today named two budget and fiscal experts to chair a special Transition Task Force on Budget and Taxes and asked them to get to work immediately on developing recommendations to help address New Jersey’s fiscal challenges.
The Governor-Elect named Richard H. Bagger of Westfield, an executive at Pfizer Inc and a former Chairman of the Assembly Appropriations Committee, and Robert E. Grady, a Livingston native, former aide to Governor Thomas H. Kean and former top official at the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as Co-Chairmen of the task force.
“Addressing the problems facing New Jersey’s economy is my highest priority, “ Christie said, “and with these two experienced budget and fiscal experts helping me spearhead our efforts we are able to get to work right away.”
The Task Force Co-Chairmen will help develop recommendations to address the fiscal deficit that state experts have estimated at over $8 billion for the coming fiscal year 2011, and to respond to the shortfall in projected state revenues in the current fiscal year 2010. They will recruit additional Task Force members and staff experts to address various components of the State’s fiscal emergency.
Bagger served in the New Jersey Assembly from 1993 to 2002 and in the State Senate from 2002 to 2003. He was Chairman of the Assembly Appropriations Committee from 1998 to 2002. He was a former Councilman and Mayor of Westfield. Currently, he serves as Senior Vice President for Worldwide Public Affairs at Pfizer Inc. Earlier in his career, Bagger served as Assistant General Counsel of Blue Cross/Blue Shield and was an attorney with the law firm of McCarter and English.
Grady served as Chief of Staff to former U.S. Representative Millicent Fenwick, as Director of Communications for former Governor Thomas H. Kean, and as Deputy Assistant to the President and Executive Associate Director of OMB in the Administration of former President George H.W. Bush. For the last decade, he had been the partner in charge of venture capital investing at The Carlyle Group, one of the world’s largest private equity firms. Before retiring this summer and joining Cheyenne Capital Fund, a private equity firm, he served as Chairman of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) in 2006-2007 and as a professor at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business from 1994-2004.