I know you are anxious to hear about any news regarding our pension and health care benefits. To that end, I am updating my president’s message in a letter to one of our member’s, Mr. D’Angelo, who sent an e-mail expressing his outrage at the recent attacks by the governor.
Since it seems that the pension/health care issues are being discussed in the media almost on a daily basis, we will try to keep you current by updating our links to articles or statements we believe would give you a better perspective on our union’s efforts to protect our benefits.
Our President’s Response to a Member:
For instance, at a recent town hall meeting, Governor Christie made two statements that were entire falsehoods. When questioned by the husband of a public school teacher, he said that NJEA NEVER sued any previous governors regarding pension payments to the system because they were Democrats. The NJEA rebuttal was that we sued Governor McGreevey, and the case was in the courts through Governor Corzine’s tenure.
The second lie was that Governor Whitman gave our NJEA members two years free of making payments to our pensions in a deal with us. Wendell Steinhauer, president of NJEA, responded that our members have made EVERY payment to the pension system, and never took one payment off, let alone two years’ worth. Former Governor Whitman even issued a statement to the press saying that she had no clue what Governor Christie was referring to, and that it was not true. If you go to the NJEA website, you can see a video link with Governor Christie making these remarks, and the NJEA response.
With warmest regards!
A COMMENT FROM ONE OF OUR MEMBERS:
It is an unfortunate situation in Trenton that you are not only dealing with a deceitful liar of a governor, but you are also dealing with the typical gutless and greedy senators, who just won’t do what is morally right for the good of the pensions system and the hard-working people of New Jersey. Hopefully, the New Jersey Supreme Court will make the morally righteous decision and hold Governor Christie accountable for his actions; after all, no one is above the law–not even this disgraceful governor!
To NJEA/NJREA and NJSEA: KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!
William N. D’Angelo, a proud member of NJEA/NJREA/MCREA
Peoria, Arizona 85382
OUR PRESIDENTS RESPONSE:
April 17, 2015
Dear Mr. D’Angelo,
Thank you for beautifully articulating your thoughts on the current pension crisis. I wholeheartedly agree with you that the governor has been arrogant and deceitful in his many dealings with our colleagues, and has failed abyssmally on making the full payment to our pension system- the law he continues to highly tout to the nation as an example of bipartisanship!
You are also correct that we must hold the state legislators accountable for their actions, or lack thereof, regarding our pensions and health care benefits. They have an obligation to represent their constituents, and to vote accordingly.
In that vein, I am happy to report that NJEA , NJREA , and MCREA are actively working together on a “full court press” to vigorously fight for no diminishment of our pension benefits, to pursue lawsuits against the governor for not providing full funding, looking into ways to maintain our healthcare benefits, and making sure our legislators are aware of the necessity to vote appropriately on these critical issues or face defeat in the next election.
Thank you again, Mr. D’Angelo, for sharing your concerns and opinions with us. I look forward to seeing more remarks from you in the near future.