Democratic Governor Phil Murphy used his emergency powers to deprive almost every private business owner and employee his or her income. Yet he made sure all “non-essential” government employees, especially those in the “woke” pro-“progressive” Democrat NJEA Teachers and CWA State Employees unions were paid in full–even when they did not report for work.
On March 16, 2020, Governor Murphy knew the state would lose $10 billion in tax collections by shutting down every “non-essential” private business in New Jersey. However, he continued to pay all 40,000 state employees their full pay, benefits and pension credits. By doing this, their union, Communications
Workers of America (CWA) collected full dues from every employee, and paid its full political donations to Democrats and “progressive”/socialist causes around the country. Murphy knows that if he has the full support of the CWA and the NJEA New Jersey Teachers Union with 100,000 dues paying members, he and Democrats around New Jersey will get re-elected, no matter how much damage he does to private business and the economy.
Both the CWA (State Employees Union) and NJEA Teacher’s Union have enormous political influence beyond their combined 140,000 members and the high dues they collect. The NJEA has direct contact with millions of voters through the public schools. CWA members have influential positions in every major newspaper and television news network.
During the past four months, Governor Murphy caused enormous financial hardship to almost every private business owner and employee. Government employees did not lose a time. In fact, all State employees will receive two 2% across the board pay increases during the next year. Who will pay for this?
Murphy plans to have the state borrow $9 billion within the next few months. The New Jersey Constitution does not permit the state to borrow money unless voters approve a ballot question. However, it says a vote is not needed when money is borrowed “to meet an emergency caused by an Act of God”.
We are in court to prove that Murphy can easily fix the budget problem by cutting state spending. If Governor Murphy had not trouble putting every “non-essential” private business and employee out of work for four months, he can certainly cut non-essential government employees, or renegotiate their salaries.
Last week Governor Murphy made a new “No Layoff Deal” with the CWA State Employees Union. That deal does not permit State from laying off any of the 40,000 state employees for the next 18 months. It also destroys the State’s ability to negotiate lower salaries and benefits to match the decline in tax collections. The CWA posted on its website that this is the best “No Layoff Deal” in America. Since the State cannot cut expenses to meet the $10 billion in lost taxes, its only choice is borrowing or massive tax hikes. However, New Jersey is already more than $238 billion in debt and borrowing more money will also cause tax hikes. The proposed borrowing law provides for an automatic statewide property tax on every parcel of real estate in New Jersey whenever state tax hikes don’t raise enough money.
That is why were are also suing to set aside the “No Layoff Deal” with the CNA. The details are set out in this legal brief filed with the court. Click here to read it. There will be a hearing before NJ Superior Court Judge Jacobson in Trenton on Friday, July 10.
Seth Grossman, Executive Director