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Bill inspired by Snooki caps public university speaker fees

Associated Press logo Associated Press 3/23/2017
FILE - In this May 29, 2014 file photo, Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi attends WE tv's "Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars" party in New York. Under legislation inspired by former "Jersey Shore" reality TV star Polizzi, no more than $10,000 of state money could go to pay speakers at New Jersey's public universities. The Democrat-controlled Assembly is scheduled to vote on the bill Thursday, March 23, 2017. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, FIle) © The Associated Press FILE - In this May 29, 2014 file photo, Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi attends WE tv's "Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars" party in New York. Under legislation inspired by former "Jersey Shore" reality TV star Polizzi, no more than $10,000 of state money could go to pay speakers at New Jersey's public universities. The Democrat-controlled Assembly is scheduled to vote on the bill Thursday, March 23, 2017. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, FIle)

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey lawmakers have approved legislation inspired by former "Jersey Shore" star Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi to prevent the state's public universities from spending more than $10,000 on speakers.

FILE – In this May 24, 2013, file photo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, right, speaks with Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, center, and Jenni "JWoww" Farley, left, cast members of MTV's "Jersey Shore," on the boardwalk where he took part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the New Jersey shore's seasonal reopening for the first time since Hurricane Sandy in Seaside Heights, N.J. Under legislation inspired by reality TV star Polizzi, no more than $10,000 of state money could go to pay speakers at New Jersey's public universities. New Jersey's Democrat-controlled Assembly was scheduled to vote Thursday, March 23, 2017, on whether to send the bill to Christie's desk. (Kevin R. Wexler /The Record via AP, file) © The Associated Press FILE – In this May 24, 2013, file photo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, right, speaks with Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, center, and Jenni "JWoww" Farley, left, cast members of MTV's "Jersey Shore," on the boardwalk where he took part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the New Jersey shore's seasonal reopening for the first time since Hurricane Sandy in Seaside Heights, N.J. Under legislation inspired by reality TV star Polizzi, no more than $10,000 of state money could go to pay speakers at New Jersey's public universities. New Jersey's Democrat-controlled Assembly was scheduled to vote Thursday, March 23, 2017, on whether to send the bill to Christie's desk. (Kevin R. Wexler /The Record via AP, file)

The Democrat-controlled Assembly passed the legislation Thursday. It now goes to the desk of Republican Gov. Chris Christie, who has disparaged the reality TV show as bad for the state's image.

Republican Assemblyman John DiMaio says he was inspired to write the measure after Polizzi earned $32,000 to speak at Rutgers in 2011. That was $2,000 more than Nobel prize-winning author Toni Morrison was paid to speak at commencement.

MTV's "Jersey Shore" focused on the hard-partying escapades of a group of young Italian-Americans at a shore house and ran from 2009 to 2012.

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This story has been corrected to show that Polizzi was paid $32,000 to speak at a Rutgers event, but not commencement.

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