Group Claims Public Job Cuts Delaying NJ Recovery
By Phil Gregory, WBGO News
Trenton. October 3, 2012
A Trenton-based liberal research group claims public sector job losses are slowing New Jersey’s recovery from the recession.
Ray Castro is the senior policy analyst at New Jersey Policy Perspective. He says if government jobs at the state and local level were not reduced in response to budget concerns, New Jersey’s unemployment rate would have been a full percentage point lower last year.
“Last year over half the gains in private jobs were offset by reductions in public sector jobs, and we just won’t make any progress if we continue to do that.”
Castro maintains cuts to the public sector contribute to the shrinking of the middle class and increases income inequality.
Senator Frank Lautenberg says cuts in public sector jobs are hurting public safety and education and are undermining the state’s economy.
“While much of the country recovers from the recession New Jersey’s economy continues to fall behind. So I say if the governor wants to fire a public worker he ought to start by firing himself.”
A spokesman for Governor Christie calls the group’s findings partisan blather. He says Christie’s actions to rein in government spending are leading to a more pro-growth economic climate.