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, March 31, 2010

Read This!

Governor Christie, most people in New Jersey, myself included, agree that the State's financial situation is dire, that the funding process for public schools is broken and needs to be fixed, that pension reform is critical, and that the time to begin addressing these issues is not tomorrow, but now. But where we disagree comes to the fore with regard to how this all came about and how we/should go about fixing it. 
 The Super in Glen Rock nails it. Some highlights:
1. Make us -ALL of the stakeholders here-a partner in the process. This first item is the most important of all. Please stop talking ill us! Talk to us! We are not the enemy! 
Most importantly, why are legislators who take advantage ofdouble-dipping (as well as lawmakers who serve on a part-time basis) and in the pension systems grandfathered when public school employees with 25+ years ofservice are not? 
...get rid of subsidies and "tax-incentives'! (read giveaways) to rich business owners who are making or stand to make multi-millions of dollars off the backs of school children. Xanadu. The Prudential Center. AtlantiC City Casinos. These three areas alone have cost New Jersey, literally, hundreds upon hundreds of millions.  
Specifically, immediately drop four of the seven years of state testing that are now required of all public schools, but particularly for those districts designated as "highachieving" by your own Department of Education. Students who can score an 85% passing rate year-over-year do not need to have instructional time wasted with over-testing. 
 Reign in Horizon Blue Cross/Blue Shield's 20%-35% annual increases and your financial worries for New Jersey will be well on their way to being solved forever.
Just read the whole thing, then demand this guy take over for Bret Schundler immediately.

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