I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

It's Not a Freeze; It's a Cut! - Part II

Suppose you are nearing the end of your career as a NJ teacher, and you want to know what your pension will be. According to the NJ State Treasurer, it's a percentage (based on how many years you worked divided by 55) of your "Final Average Salary." What's that?
‘Final Average Salary’ means the average salary
for the 36 months (30 months for employees with 10
month contracts) immediately preceding your retirement.
If your last three years are not your highest
years of salary, your allowance will be calculated
using your three highest fiscal years (July - June) of
Now, nearly every teacher's final three years are their peak earning times, because they moved up each year on the salary guides negotiated in their contracts. EXCEPT...

When you take a pay freeze, and start paying 1.5% for your health benefits; then your salary goes down. Which means the pension you will have for the rest of your life will go down as well.

Which is exactly what Chris Christie wants. A permanent cut in retiring teachers' pensions.

Say it again: "It's not a freeze, it's a cut!"

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