Archive for the ‘Union County Government’ Category

Multiemployer Plan Primer and My Free Speech

The Joint Select Committee on the Solvency of Multiemployer Pension Plans held a public hearing today on an overview of the multiemployer pension system for which they released a document that provides a useful summary of present law relating to retirement plans generally and to multiemployer defined benefit plans in particular, as well as selected data relating to multiemployer defined benefit plans. Very little coverage of the hearing so far but it is becoming ever more likely that this process is setting up for a bailout after the mid-term election when Democrats get back in. And speaking of rigged government, tomorrow my free speech (and that of everyone in Union County) will be put to the test.

Excerpts from both below:

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Suppressing Free Speech in Union County – Again

Union County has, since I have been watching closely, been ruled by political bosses – Charlotte DeFilippo, then Jerry Green, and now Nicholas Scutari. They hand pick the freeholders who get on the ballot and dictate to them what projects get done and who gets hired. If a freeholder steps out of line he loses the line.

This IS government in Union County. Yet when Bruce Paterson broached the obvious in Open Comment time the Scutari/Oatman regime shut him down.

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Burt Reynolds and the Year of the Dumbass

Before getting to a review of the first ever set of GASB 68 reports for New Jersey, a little break as I use this blog as a file cabinet for interesting excerpts from books read (in this case But Enough About Me by Burt Reynolds) and look back at the year of my other life – watchdogging Union County government – as eloquently summarized by Bruce Paterson:

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Local Debt Crisis Should Be Obvious

Local governments are piling up debt at such an alarming pace that this blogger called it the next crisis “nobody saw coming”.

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New Jersey put a cap on the amount local governments can raise by taxation so to keep their gravy trains fueled at least one local government has taken to bonding to make up the difference and nobody with any oversight capacity seems to care. State governments, accountants, rating agencies, and the media all do not want to see the crisis because that would not be to their advantage.

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Free Lunch Mentality

granados sullivan

Free lunches exist for people who deserve them (and  one or two who don’t) but would those people, especially the children, appreciate it more if they had to pay a nominal fee so they don’t come to understand that there will always be a free lunch available?

That was the point made by a speaker at last night’s Union County freeholder meeting and it was met with:

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CF12: The Missed Step

Half the sorrows of the world, I suppose, are caused by making false assumptions.

H. L. Mencken; Selected Prejudices, page 78

The Christie-Freeze roadmap to pension reform in New Jersey breaks down to three steps with the first two both necessary and possible:

  1. Get rid of the defined benefit concept with the state picking up the $200 billion shortfall which they will get from….
  2. Moving the cost of teacher pensions and health benefits back to the localities who will pick up the $200 billion needed from…..
  3. Saving on the cost of health benefits for their employees.

Yes defined benefit plans need to go away for public sector employees since politicians and their enablers will always underfund them.  Likewise localities should be picking up all costs for their school districts rather than negotiating benefits that oblige income-tax payers.

But believing that local governments will generate their $200 billion to kick off this process by a combination of higher employee contributions and instituting wellness programs is nuts.  There is a better way.

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Chasing More Stender Dirt

There apparently is now a state investigation and $11,000 to be repaid and MY9 is still chasing and coming up with Linda Stender intimidating the Habitat for Humanity folks and ratting out her husband to Jerry Green:
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Neil Cohen, Joe Cryan, and now Linda Stender. Are there any depths of depravity to which our elected representatives in this county will not sink to embarrass their constituents?

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