The roster of state workers raking in six-figure pay skyrocketed last year by an astonishing 12 percent to nearly 7,700 employees, according to a Herald review — a budget-busting bombshell that has fiscal watchdogs howling “enough.” The review comes as Gov. Deval Patrick is pushing for massive $1.9 billion in tax and fee hikes amid a sputtering state economy and a climbing jobless rate. The Herald found that 816 state workers have cracked the ranks of the $100,000-plus pay club — bringing the state total to 7,694 who earn six-figure pay, a tally that has budget watchers seeing red.
Comments: How liberals think: "Why worry? Just have everyone work for the state government. With salaries like that, there will be few complaints about tax increases necessary to pay the workers."
Just out of curiosity, I wonder how many of the ´new´ $100K+ employees are ´new hires´ or received huge pay increases, and how many are people who were making, say, $99,800 per year, and received a 1% pay increase? This happened a few years ago in the federal government when people at the upper end of the GS-13 pay level (many of whom are senior technical professionals, as well as a good portion of long-time upper-mid-level managers) went from just under $100K to just over $100K. It was a relatively small pay increase, but it put them ´over the line´, and there was a slew of news articles about it. Reading the articles and not knowing the background, it sounded like all these people had received dramatic pay increases, when it was actually a fairly small increase, but it was from just ´short´ of the $100K line to just over the $100K line.
Newark — Two Sheriff´s officers investigating possible drug activity shot and killed a suspected drug dealer after police claim the man approached them with a loaded weapon, Essex County Chief of Detectives, Anthony Ambrose, said today. The two plain-clothes deputies were conducting a narcotics investigation and approached their target in a building on North 9th Street in Newark. Ambrose said the man came out of the building with a loaded weapon. The deputies fired one shot each, killing the man, whose name was not divulged, Ambrose said. A group of residents, who had a different story about what happened during the
Jersey City this afternoon finally opened the new 100 Steps, a nearly $1 million project in the works for two decades that connects the Jersey City Heights with Paterson Plank Road, near a Hoboken light rail station. The project is a restoration of the original “Franklin Avenue Steps” that were built more than 100 years ago and torn down in the 1990s after it fell into disrepair. The new, steel staircase is actually only 95 steps. (Snip) The project cost $946,228, according to city spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill. That’s about $1,000 per step. Bill Gaughan, who represented Ward D on the City
The U.S. Marshals Service spent close to $800,000 on “swag” from 2005 through 2010, according to a government report released Tuesday. Defined as promotional materials, including scarves, challenge coins and Christmas ornaments, “swag” must be considered “necessary” to count as a legitimate expense, according to the investigation conducted by the Justice Department’s inspector general. But senior managers with the service’s Investigative Operations Division spent excessively and in violation of guidelines set by the Government Accountability Office, the report concludes. (Snip) The spending included $155,081 on challenge coins, $11,338 on neckties and silk scarves, $13,605 on Christmas ornaments, $16,084 on blankets and
Corporate heads for David’s Bridal shops have reportedly sent out notices to their employees that due to Obamacare, their full-time services will no longer be needed. The employees are being shifted into part-time status, The Daily Caller reported. Store managers can’t discuss the situation, the news outlet said, and have referred all calls for information to the headquarters office, located in Pennsylvania. But at least one Twitter poster confirmed the situation and so did a handful of store employees, The Daily Caller reported. She wrote about her daughter, who works for the company: “David’s Bridal just cut a bunch
Bob Antonicello, the former Jersey City Redevelopment Agency chief pushed out by Mayor Steve Fulop, will receive $265,000 to step down early. City spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill confirmed the figure this afternoon to The Jersey Journal. Morrill said the payment includes “compensation obligations,” as well as Antonicello’s “accrued vacation and sick time.” (Snip) Fulop, who was elected mayor in May, sent Antonicello a letter on Sept. 28 accusing Antonicello of "unethical and imprudent business decisions." Antonicello should resign, Fulop said at the time, or face termination, leading Antonicello to accuse the mayor of hurling "careless accusations.” Morrill said Antonicello resigned after discussions
Kayla Smith, 35, has been out of college for years, but she´s returned to dorm-style living in an apartment the size of a one-car garage in a brand-new building in San Francisco´s Tenderloin. "It´s the price you pay for living in San Francisco," she said. She winnowed her possessions to the bare minimum when she moved into the 279-square-foot space in September, paying $1,850 a month for the convenience of living blocks from work amid the emerging Mid-Market area. Urban planners and San Francisco leaders say smaller units help tackle the city´s housing shortage
These heartbreaking pictures show the squalid conditions that thousands of Roma children are forced to call home in the city of Kosice, Slovakia. The city, the largest in eastern Slovakia, received £51million when it was named the European Capital of Culture 2013 alongside Marseille, France. The money is to be invested into the city´s infrastructure, creative industries and tourism. However, in the suburb of Lunik IX around 8,000 Slovakian Roma, most of them children, live in squalor in one of the world´s worst slums. In many of the pictures, piles of rubbish can be see surrounding the blocks of flats where
Actress Michelle Pfeiffer has revealed she joined a cult that believed you can live without food or water. In a candid interview, the Dangerous Liaisons star describes being put on a diet ´nobody can adhere to´ and psychologically manipulated by a ´very controlling couple´ when she first reached Hollywood aged 20. She was taught to be a ´breatharian´ - someone who supposedly gets all their nourishment from the sun, with no need to eat or drink. And, despite struggling to earn a living, she was forced to pay for their guidance. Now, 35 years later, she describes being ´saved´ by her first
Iran has launched its first submarine for tourists in the Persian Gulf waters, an Iranian-made undersea vehicle. State television says the submarine has been dubbed Morvarid, which is pearl in Farsi, and has the capacity to carry four people per voyage. It says the vessel is four metres long and three metres in both width and height. Friday´s report says the submarine will serve tourists in Kish Island, Iran´s prime tourist spot in the Gulf. Morvarid has been designed and manufactured by Iranian experts. It is said to have a speed of up to 12 knots and a diesel generator but can be electrically powered
British companies are actively recruiting Romanians to come and work as midwives, waiters and hotel workers in the UK. Ahead of Britain opening its borders in January, weekly jobs fairs are being held in the capital Bucharest. And dozens of recruitment websites are advertising low-skilled jobs in this country – some offering the promise of ‘cash daily’ and others claiming knowledge of English is ‘not necessary’. (Snip) One advert reads: ‘Britain will remove restrictions on the labour market from 2014! Do not miss the start!’ Another boasts of the joys of working in the ‘historic, multicultural and glorious United Kingdom’,
Philadelphia — A federal appeals court has upheld the five-year prison term handed to a former Bergen County insurance broker convicted of using straw donors to steer nearly $100,000 in illegal contributions to Senator Robert Menendez´s campaign. In an opinion issued Thursday, the panel of three judges in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit in Philadelphia said they found "no error" in Joseph Bigica´s sentence. (Snip) Bigica has been behind bars since last year, when he pleaded guilty to using 19 straw donors to funnel a total of $98,600 into a federal candidate´s campaign coffers between 2005 and
Atlantic County — A longtime New Jersey Turnpike Authority employee was convicted Wednesday of stealing the wallet of a man involved in a car accident near a toll plaza last year. Assistant plaza supervisor Thomas Giberson scooped up the wallet containing $400 cash and hid it in a tollbooth at the Great Egg Toll Plaza in Somers Point, a jury in Atlantic County found. Giberson, 35, who has worked for the New Jersey Turnpike Authority for 16 years, was found guilty of fourth-degree theft Surveillance camera footage showed Giberson swiping the wallet after it fell off the lap of a Worcester
The Virginia governor’s race was supposed to prove how the Tea Party destroyed the GOP. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli was supposed to be too extreme and too much of a right-winger to be competitive. McAuliffe, who had a double-digit lead as late as two weeks ago, was coasting to victory on the strength of the national disgust over the government shutdown that hit Northern Virginia with its large number of federal employees hit. But once the shutdown ended and the country began to take notice of the ObamaCare rollout fiasco, the dynamic in Virginia changed. While liberal pundits will probably
President Barack Obama told his enthusiastic supporters Monday night that he never promised what video recordings show him promising at least 29 times. The videos show Obama promising 300 million Americans that “if you like your health-care plan, you will be able to keep your health-care plan, period.” But that’s not what he really said, Obama announced Monday in a speech to about 200 Organizing for Action supporters, gathered at the St. Regis hotel in D.C. “What we said was you could keep it if it hasn’t changed since the law was passed,” he told Obamacare’s political beneficiaries and contractors. That claim is not
How the heck did that happen? Most public polls leading up to Election Day had Democrat Terry McAuliffe coasting to victory, some by double digits, in the Virginia governor’s race. Instead he squeaked by, beating Republican Ken Cuccinelli by less than 3 percentage points. The much-closer-than-expected outcome blunts the narrative that this was a clean win for Democrats going into 2014 and guarantees an intense blame game among Republicans about what might have put Cuccinelli over the top.
They said he was “unelectable.” The RNC put only $3 million into this race. Ken was outspent by a margin of something between 4:1 and 10:1, if you believe the Associated Press. The Democrats poured everything into trying to lie to voters and portray Cuccinelli as an extremist — and they barely pulled this one out. Would another $3 million have swung 50,000 votes? The Republicans, starting with Bill Bolling, who undercut Cuccinelli as unelectable have egg all over their faces. This was a winnable election. How did we give this away to Terry McAuliffe? Some serious soul-searching should be
Hillary Clinton of all people knows how political fortunes turn on a dime. But she must be puzzled nonetheless, and spooked, that over a six-month period when she made no big news whatsoever, her popularity took a double-digit tumble. A poll released last week by NBC News and The Wall Street Journal charted the decline. It found that the percentage of Americans who view her favorably had dropped to 46 from 56. The percentage with unfavorable views had risen, less strikingly, to 33 from 29. Here we go. The beginning of the end of her inevitability. It’s about time, because
Democrat Terry McAuliffe is projected to win the Virginia gubernatorial race, defeating Republican nominee Ken Cuccinelli in a surprisingly close victory. Fox News projected McAuliffe as the winner Tuesday night. The closely watched raced pitted a Tea Party-backed Republican and an establishment Democrat locked in an expensive, ideological battle whose outcome is expected to set a course for the 2014 and 2016 elections -- in large part forcing the GOP to consider whether a strong conservative candidate is the party’s best pick to win a national election. Cuccinelli, trailing late by single digits, tried unsuccessfully to use voter dissatisfaction with ObamaCare to stage
Yesterday’s exit polls from New Jersey won’t easily be forgotten. They will be cited and repeated endlessly by pundits and Governor Chris Christie’s supporters to bolster his case for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. Any Republican who can get 60 percent of the vote in a blue state is bound to become the subject of presidential speculation. But when a Republican who is pro-life and has fought a running battle with labor unions and Democrats over taxes and budgets does so, he parachutes into the first tier of any discussion of future candidates. That Christie did this while winning
Many insurance executives whose companies are offering plans on the federal exchanges are frustrated with the realities that the rollout of the Affordable Care Act have laid bare. They’re talking about it, yes, but prying a quote from them on the record is a different matter. Health care consultant Larry Thompson says that for them, speaking up would be “suicide.” “They are afraid to say anything because they don’t want HHS all over them,” he says. ”A lot of the carriers to Medicaid and Medicare work, they are afraid of retribution.” Last week, health care consultant Bob Laszewski told CNN
Think back to the fall of 2008. Congress was asked to pass a $700 billion taxpayer bailout for Wall Street. We were told it had to be passed, or else the economy would collapse, perhaps into another Great Depression. House conservatives voted it down. The stock market fell hundreds of points in response. In the ensuing panic, Congress went along and passed the bailout. That bailout, and the insane, nearly $1 trillion “stimulus” bill passed just a few months later as Obama’s first act, gave birth to the Tea Party revolution that gave Republicans a 63-seat landslide in the House in the
Voters elected Bill de Blasio New York’s 109th mayor Tuesday in one of the most sweeping victories in history — returning City Hall to Democratic control for the first time in 20 years. De Blasio, who at 6-foot-5 will become the city’s tallest leader ever, breezed in after waves of voters embraced his progressive vision and vows to move the city in a new direction. And according to the mayor-in-waiting, those changes could come right out of the gate. “We will have things to say tomorrow,” de Blasio said after casting a ballot with his family near their Park Slope,
There is an apocryphal story about the origins of neoconservatism in the 1960s. Some liberal professors at Harvard were sympathetic to the New Left and such radical groups as Students for a Democratic Society. But one day one of these professors heard the radicals suggest burning down the Harvard library as an act of protest, and the professor suddenly realized that he had nothing in common with them at all. He organized some other professors into a vigil to protect the library at all cost. Today, the problem isn’t the New Left, but the radical right, which has dominated American
Are you racist if you have a gun in your home? According to a study by foreigners, yes. Researchers in England and Australia randomly dialed phone numbers until they found white voters willing to take part in their study. Those who agreed to participate were paid $10 a month from January 2008 to September 2009 and provided Internet access if they didn’t have it. Respondents were quizzed to gauge their level of racism. Here’s a few of the questions: • How well does the word ‘violent’ describe most blacks? •How much do you agree with the following statement? “Generations of slavery and discrimination have created conditions