New Jersey State AFL-CIO leadership were joined by Senate President Stephen Sweeney, Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and the leaders of the largest public-sector unions on Thursday, June 25, 2015, to urge Gov. Christie to obey his own law by fully funding pensions.
Everyone is abiding by the pension reform law – except the governor who signed it. Retirees forfeited their cost-of-living increases, active employees are paying more, local governments have never skipped a payment and the Legislature has again drafted a budget that includes the entire amount of required pension funding. And now, while the governor continues to break his own pension law by skipping contractually required pension payments, he is calling for additional concessions for public workers.Read more
In his budget address, Gov. Christie took yet another swipe at his favorite target – public-sector workers – while remaining silent on some of the most serious problems facing our state. Roads and bridges are crumbling and the state is out of money to fix them. Our state ranks 49th out of 50 in job growth and a quarter of casino workers have been laid off, yet the state lacks a comprehensive plan to create jobs. Atlantic City has been devastated by casino closings, soaring property taxes and home foreclosures, but there is no plan to save this vital economic engine. Many of our largest cities and poorest communities continue to struggle without any revitalization plan. College costs are unaffordable for many, yet the governor has not addressed this inequity. It costs taxpayers more when the state borrows money, but Gov. Christie has taken no concrete steps to stop the record number of credit downgrades that have occurred on his watch.Read more
Gov. Christie used the bragging rights from the 2011 pension reforms to raise his national profile and further his political career – while refusing to uphold his end of the deal.
The governor continued to skimp on the state’s required pension payments, knowing he was breaking his own law, showing callous disregard for the long-term solvency of the retirement system and daring someone to challenge him.
The New Jersey State AFLCIO and several public employee unions sued, and today won a hard-fought victory, with Gov. Christie being ordered by Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson to reinstate the $1.6 billion cut he made to the state’s pension payment.Read more
As Gov. Christie welcomed Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai to the Statehouse on Wednesday, it was obvious that the governor was serving his own political interests rather than those of the New Jersey workers he was elected to represent.Read more
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie had the opportunity to create badly needed manufacturing and fabricating jobs here at home, where job creation has lagged the region and too many residents remain unemployed. But, instead of signing the bills requiring public contracts to be filled with US-made materials whenever possible, Christie vetoed the “Buy American” bills the Legislature sent to his desk in December.Read more
Gov. Chris Christie delivered his sixth State of the State address on Tuesday, January 13, 2015. Despite his attempt to paint a glossy portrait of the state under his leadership, working families and many of our communities continue to struggle under the weight of policies that benefit his wealthy friends but hurt the middle-class. New Jersey tops the nation in out-migration and the state is one of three where poverty is going up. Since 2009, the year Christie was elected, 196,000 more New Jerseyans are living in deep poverty.Read more
The op-ed below was published on nj.com:
Gov. Chris Christie often talks about the need for transparency in government. He frequently points to his own administration as an example of how to carry out the functions of government in a forthcoming and above-board manner. Why, then, has the governor vetoed a bill that establishes oversight for deals that privatize government services?Read more
The trustees for the state pension funds for teachers, public employees and police and firefighters have sued Gov. Chris Christie's administration for failing to make required payments into the state retirement system.Read more
It gets harder every day to take Governor Christie seriously. His latest inflammatory comment that he is “tired of hearing about the minimum wage” further demonstrates how out of touch he is with low- and middle-income families.Read more
New Jersey State AFL-CIO President Charles Wowkanech issued the following statement on the seventh downgrade of NJ’s debt under Gov. Chris Christie:
“The governor’s visits to Mexico last week and to Camden today show he’ll do anything to avoid responsibility for New Jersey’s severe fiscal problems. In again downgrading New Jersey’s bond rating, Fitch Ratings noted that Christie undercut his own reforms by refusing to make the full pension payment required by the law he signed. It will cost taxpayers more to repay bonds used to build schools and roads. As the state’s fiscal steward-in-chief, Christie has failed New Jersey taxpayers.”