Review Uncovers Generous Benefits At Some NJ Authorities

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TRENTON – Last week, New Jersey’s Office of the Inspector General released its 2009 analysis of the benefits provided to the employees of more than 40 state authorities.

Among the highlights of the review:

  • Eight executive officers have a base salary in excess of the Governor’s salary of $175,000.
  • 748 authority employees are paid in excess of $100,000 per year.
  • The number of employees at state authorities has decreased by over 2,000 since 2006.
  • Approximately half of the authorities reviewed were not required to and did not participate in the State Furlough Program requiring employees to take 10 unpaid leave days.

Several authorities:

  • have more paid holidays than the state;
  • provide more generous vacation and/or sick leave than the state;
  • permit employees to annually “cash in” unused sick and vacation time;
  • have more generous travel and entertainment policies than the state; and
  • use the federal rate of $.55/mile for vehicle mileage reimbursement rather than the state’s rate of $.31/mile.

A full version of the report is available on the Office of the Inspector General’s web site, www.state.nj.us/oig.

Inspector General Mary Jane Cooper reiterated her recommendation that all state authorities be required to bring their policies and procedures further in alignment with those of the state where appropriate.

“Each year, our report highlights significant deviations of employee benefits provided at state authorities from those benefits provided to similarly situated state employees and raises warning flags to those authorities to reevaluate their practices,” Cooper said.

The review did not include the multitude of local authorities in New Jersey, such as county improvement authorities or municipal parking authorities.


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