By Timothy J. Carroll | September 7th, 2010 - 11:50am
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WAYNE - It's not his mess, Gov. Chris Christie said today as he unveiled his four-point reform package at Packanack Lake Country Club.

Most of the country club folk were loving him; others who stand to lose the most on pension reform, family and friends of police and fire employees, murmured in the back of the room. 

"We're cleaning up the empties laying all over the floor," Christie said.

Over the next four weeks, Christie said he'll unveil one reform per week, including sweeping ethics reform, public pension modification, private job creation, and education funding remodeling.

With 107 days left in legislative session before the winter holidays, Christie started the clock on the Democrat-controlled state legislature. "Plenty of time," he said.

In dealing with soaring taxation and deficit spending – noting that three out of every four tax dollars is going to personnel costs – Christie said, "You don't have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out where to go for the money."

Sure to get the most pushback, his pension reform initiative goes further than the bill passed earlier this year, which only adjusted pensions for incoming employees.

"If we don’t change the rules of the road, that pension is not going to be there for you."

He said a $46 billion pension deficit will nearly double when retirees come calling, even if the state fully funds the system from now on.

He blamed past officials who "made promises with their mouth that they couldn’t keep with their wallet."

Tomorrow he'll let loose his ethics initiatives in Raritan. He noted dual office holding, multiple public salaries, and legislative financial disclosure.

Two weeks from now, he'll let Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno take the lead on job creation.

As an example of the need for education reform, he pointed at Newark, spending $24,000 per student – mostly state funded per the Abbott ruling – yet has a 50 percent dropout rate. He pitched a new teacher merit pay system, among other things.

"I'm going to step on the toes that need to be stepped on," he said.

 

The Back Room

McGreevey expresses no desire to be power broker in Newark mayoral race

Former New Jersey Governor James McGreevey might remember that former Newark Mayor Sharpe James played a significant role in helping him to get that title. But regarding the highly contentious Newark mayoral race between candidates Ras Baraka and Shavar Jeffries, McGreevey told PolitickerNJ.com on Thursday that he has no interest in picking a side.  

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 17, 2014

Bergen Dems demand Donovan cancel fundraiser with Christie after unlimited contributions commentsHACKENSACK - Bergen County Democratic Chairman Lou Stellato called on Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan to cancel a fundraiser scheduled for May 5 with Gov. Chris Christie after he made remarks on allowing unlimited campaign contributions to political...

Op-Ed

The future of NJ Politics should not be politicians investigating politicians

By JON BRAMNICK Voices around the country agree with our concern that "bipartisan committee led by John Wisniewski is partisan." Below are observers who agree Wisneiwski's committee is not bipartisan: Chuck Todd, NBC News: "Democrats made a mistake... Read More >

Contributors

(4-16-14) New Jersey Vote By Mail Law - The voter turnout for New Jersey’s November gubernatorial election was the lowest since the days of prohibition, coming... more »
When it comes to profiling Christie, facts are for wussies (4/10/14) - As the national media stories on our Guv pile up, expect more blunders about the Garden State.... more »
This week I begin a series called Dispatches from Somewhere Else. Based on my on-going experiences as an everyman in New Jersey politics, these Dispatches review the hollowness of... more »
Watching Governor Chris Christie's shocking BridgeGate implosion, it's easy to forget the time when he truly seemed unstoppable.  Blessed with incredible political gifts and a Jersey bluster to match,... more »

Quote of the Day

Quote of the day

“The new agenda is charter schools. It’s a profit-making business. $500 million will not be in our hands. The school board is an advisory board. We are not going to tell the governor to unleash the dollars. Don’t be fooled. It’s not abracadabra. It’s politics.” - Paterson Mayor Jeff Jones

- PolitickerNJ.com

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