I Have a Gripe

March 25, 2010

NJ Needs Budget Cuts, but this Isn’t the Right Way

Filed under: Economy,Education,Finances,New Jersey — alvb1227 @ 12:22 pm

Within the last week, New Jersey’s new Governor made sweeping budget cuts in the state’s education system. I completely agree that there is LOTS of waste in the schools, but I disagree that this is the right way to go about it.

First off, it gives Boards of Education reason to reneg on signed contracts with their teachers. What I would like to know is why is that OK, but when the federal government gave bailout money to AIG and the like, not only did executives keep their pay, but they received their bonuses as well? Why you might as? Because they had signed contracts! Just like the teachers!

I don’t necessarily disagree that teachers should contribute to their healthcare, but I would like to know if that applies to all education employees, or are teachers being singled out? If they are, I would think that it is Unconstitutional because it singles out a particular group. While I am not a Constitutional attorney, this is just the way it looks to me. I am also wondering what happens to teachers who have been frozen on the pay guides (yes, they do exist), and they have to contribute, that would be considered a paycut.

As I have said in a previous post, it is always easy to go after public employees like teachers, fire fighters, police and the like. Their jobs are NOT easy.

What I am curious about is how the often top-heavy school administrations  will be handled. They have a separate union and representation. What about board and school administrations that sometimes have close to double-digit assistants and secretaries that often make more than teachers!

Does everyone in this country have a right to be paid, and paid well, for doing a good job? Absolutely. However, if public employees, like teachers, are going to be asked to take cuts, then all employees related to education, like school administrators, secretaries, etc. should also bear the burden.

I do want to say that I overall support what the Governor is doing to reign in costs, turn this state around into a positive direction and help reduce our state’s deficit. I just wonder if this plan has really been fully thought through.

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