A friend, a state employee, sent the following to me with a request that I post it here on Bluejersey.net. I am afraid I have been negligent about it and hope it is still timely. Personal matters have kept me from being as involved in blogging as I would like.
Last week, the Star-Ledger carried a story about Governor Christie and the legislature agreeing that benefits for state workers must be cut, further promising a plan will be in place by the end of June. Workers have come to expect Republicans to invalidate collective bargaining rights, strip negotiated benefits and to privatize pension plans. The Republicans have found a collaborator in Senate President Stephen Sweeney, whose plan, described at the URL below, is nearly impossible to figure out, but it plainly shifts catastrophic costs to workers. Despite what you have heard, state workers are not overpaid. Many haven’t seen salary increases in years and a drastic increase in benefits costs will push especially low-income state employees into cheaper cross-your-fingers insurance plans that cover very little. This will endanger not just individuals but entire communities.