Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Fighting for a Free Press

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Fighting for a Free Press

Article excerpt

State legislators are expected to be in voting sessions Monday. What should be top of queue is a state Senate attempt to override a Christie veto of a bill that would ensure that women receive the same pay as men for the same work. We urge legislators to override Christie's May veto.

It took seven months for legislative action on a bill of great importance to women across this state. But it took only seven days for several proposals designed to benefit the politically connected to come up for a vote on the same day.

On Monday, legislators will vote on whether they should allow Governor Christie to sign a book deal while still serving as governor, give pay raises to legislative aides, judges and some other state employees, and pull public notices from newspapers. Although the long-term effects of these bills will be significant, there is no pressing need to rush these bills through in eight days. The only reason legislators are moving at break-neck speed is that Christie wants them to, and legislative leaders - Republicans and Democrats - have acquiesced. Why, we do not know.

There may be an argument to make about raising some state employee salaries - for example, judicial pay. While we do not see how a state saddled with debt can give raises, we have an open mind. Public hearings scheduled with enough notice to allow the public to attend and testify would be helpful.

But we do not understand why anyone would want to bend over backwards to allow Christie to make more money while governor. He abandoned the state for most of his second term to run for higher office. As we see it, Christie should be cutting the state a check for being a no-show at work, not the other way around.

But it is the public notice bill that is urgent to us - and to the people of New Jersey. We acknowledge that removing public notices would have a radical impact on our bottom line and the bottom line of other newspapers across New Jersey. …

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