You pay a total of $124,000 into your pension plan and, upon retiring at age 49, you receive $3.3 million in pension payments and $500,000 in health care benefits. You receive $3.8 million in total on a $124,000 investment.
You pay a total of $62,000 towards a pension plan and absolutely nothing for health care (medical, dental and vision coverage) over your working career. Upon retirement, you are paid $1.4 million in pension and $215,000 in health care benefits. You receive $1.6 million on a $62,000 investment.
These are real world examples from New Jersey's crushing public sector union retirement plans paid for by the state's taxpayers. Republican Governor Chris Christie is demanding drastic actions to prevent New Jersey from falling off the precipice and into full-fledged bankruptcy.
This year’s budget projected 5.1% growth in sales tax revenue and flat growth in corporate business tax revenues. In June of 2009, was there anyone in New Jersey, other than in the Department of Treasury, who actually believed any revenues would grow in 2009-2010? With spiraling unemployment heading over 10%, with a financial system in crisis and with consumers petrified to spend, only Trenton treasury officials could certify that kind of growth. In fact, sales tax revenue is not up 5%, it is down 5.5 %; and corporate business tax revenue is not flat, it is down 8%.
...For example, the state cannot continue to subsidize New Jersey transit to the extent it does. So I am cutting that subsidy. New Jersey transit will have to improve the efficiency of its operations, revisit its rich union contracts, end the patronage hiring that has typified its past
...The state cannot this year spend another $100 million contributing to a pension system that is desperately in need of reform
One state retiree, 49 years old, paid, over the course of his entire career, a total of $124,000 towards his retirement pension and health benefits. What will we pay him? $3.3 million in pension payments over his life and nearly $500,000 for health care benefits -- a total of $3.8m on a $120,000 investment. Is that fair?
A retired teacher paid $62,000 towards her pension and nothing, yes nothing, for full family medical, dental and vision coverage over her entire career. What will we pay her? $1.4 million in pension benefits and another $215,000 in health care benefit premiums over her lifetime. Is it “fair” for all of us and our children to have to pay for this excess?
The total unfunded pension and medical benefit costs are $90 billion. We would have to pay $7 billion per year to make them current. We don’t have that money—you know it and I know it. What has been done to our citizens by offering a pension system we cannot afford and health benefits that are 41% more expensive than the average Fortune 500 company’s costs is the truly unfair part of this equation.
California, another deep blue state controlled in large part by public sector unions, is also in crisis. It seems unable, or unwilling, to deal with the fiscal realities.
• California spent $75 million on cars and furniture in the midst of a massive financial crisis...
• spends $4 billion a year on educating illegal immigrants...
• spends $775 million annually for illegals' medical care...
• and spends $500 million a year on other welfare benefits for illegals...
Mike "Mish" Shedlock calls public sector unions "Public Enemy Number One".
The reality is public unions are public enemy number one. Christie did not go far enough. He should have stated a goal of totally abolishing the unions.
Nonetheless, Christie's speech makes me want to stand up and salute. Someone finally had the courage to lay the blame for state fiscal crises smack where blames belongs, on public unions and political hacks willing to buy union votes.
Christie's proposal is just a start. The job is not over until every public union in the country is abolished along with their overbloated pension plans.
The financial blight -- bequeathed by the public sector unions to state and local government -- is not yet visible to most Americans. Thanks to pragmatists like Governor Christie, these unions are going to resemble cockroaches when the light of day shines on their untenable contracts.
Linked by: Hot Air and Rush Limbaugh. Thanks!