New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivered a rousing keynote speech to the Republican National Convention Tuesday evening, but in talking about his success in turning his state around, the rotund rumbler left out some important details.
New Jersey Watchdog's Mark Lagerkvist notes this morning that Christie has indeed taken on the all-powerful teachers and government employee unions in seeking pension and other entitlement reforms. "With bipartisan leadership we saved taxpayers $132 billion over 30 years and saved retirees their pensions," Christie declared in the centerpiece of his speech.
|‘The most prominent of the double-dippers exposed recently by New Jersey Watchdog just happens to be Christie's deputy chief of staff. - New Jersey Watchdog’|
"Christie did spearhead legislation that increased pension contributions by public employees, tweaked benefits and halted cost of living increases," New Jersey Watchdog said. "But it is equally true that he did little or nothing to stop the costly practice of 'double-dipping' - which allows well-connected officials to 'retire,' start collecting a pension and then return to work for the state, often the next day or week."
The most prominent of the double-dippers exposed recently by New Jersey Watchdog just happens to be Christie's deputy chief of staff, Louis Goetting, "who gets $228,860 a year - $140,000 in salary, plus $88,860 as a state retiree."
New Jersey Watchdog found at least 60 double-dippers in New Jersey state government. Between them, they collect nearly $10 million annually, including $4.4 million in pensions and $5.5 million in salaries for their present state government positions. A third of the 60 were hired by Christie, according to New Jersey Watchdog.
Some might say that's the kind of crony politics that represents business-as-usual for career politicians of all stripes.
Go here for more from New Jersey Watchdog.