Category Archives: double dipping

NJ WATCHDOG INVESTIGATION: Senator Triple-Dipper

For Immediate Release:

NJ Lawmaker Has a Big Pension…Plus Two Public Paychecks!

MEET THE BIGGEST ‘TRIPLE-DIPPER’ IN THE NEW JERSEY STATEHOUSE: SEN. FRED MADDEN POCKETS $241,000 A YEAR IN PAY & PENSION

For New Jersey state Sen. Frederick Madden Jr., the path of public service also has been a road to personal wealth.
Madden collects more than $241,000 a year in public salaries plus retirement pay. He gets $49,000 as a legislator, a $106,983 as a police academy dean and an $85,272 annual pension as a State Police retiree.
Among the 15 legislators who draw state pensions and salaries, no one pockets more than the senator from the state’s 4th Legislative District, which includes parts of Gloucester and Camden counties.

Since he “retired” at age 48 nearly a decade ago, Madden has cashed $770,156 in New Jersey retirement checks. He will get more than $2.5 million, if he lives until age 80 — his statistical average life expectancy.

“I’ve earned that…” said Madden. “You can make it sound like I’m getting something I don’t deserve, and that’s wrong.”
For the complete New Jersey Watchdog investigative report and a list of double-dipping state lawmakers, click here – or visit www.njwatchdog.org.

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Filed under double dipping, Mark Lagerkvist, nj watchdog, press release, state pension system, triple dipping

NJ Homeland Security’s 18 Double-Dippers Nab $9M in Pensions

For immediate release:

Inside the Gov’s ‘Office of Retirement $ecurity?’

The seal reads New Jersey Office of Homeland Security & Preparedness. But for agents drawing state salaries plus pension pay, it’s a symbol of their own fiscal security.

OHSP provides a bureaucratic safe haven for 18 “retired” officials who have collected nearly $9 million in state pension checks, a New Jersey Watchdog investigation revealed.

Those double-dippers currently receive more than $3 million a year – $1.3 million in state pension checks plus $1.7 million in salaries. On average, each gets $171,000 a year – $95,000 a year in salary plus $76,000 in retirement pay.

One-third of OHSP stafffers with salaries over $75,000 are double-dippers, led by Deputy Director Drew Lieb. He gets $226,000 a year – a $130,000 salary plus a $96,000 State Police pension as a retired lieutenant colonel.

New Jersey Watchdog’s analysis of state payroll and pension records for the 18 officials also found:

  • One-third “retired” from public employment for one day to start drawing state pensions.
  • Half are State Police retirees; the rest retired from other state or local law enforcement units.
  • The average age of retirement was 49.
OHSP reports directly to Gov. Chris Christie. It is a cabinet-level agency that functions primarily as a bureaucracy administering government grants and planning strategies to react to potential catastrophes

The story, along with New Jersey Watchdog’s list of “retired” officilas employed by OHSP is online at http://newjersey.watchdog.org/2012/01/16/homeland-security/.

New Jersey Watchdog – http://newjersey.watchdog.org – is a news site devoted to investigative reporting and public service journalism. Editor Mark Lagerkvist can be reached at Mark@Lagerkvist.net.

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Filed under double dipping, Gov. Chris Christie, Mark Lagerkvist, nj watchdog

NJW INVESTIGATION: AG’S DOUBLE-DIPPERS GET $14M

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:


Sgt. State Investigator Robert W. Kent hit a million dollar jackpotKent didn't win a lottery; he is a double-dipper playing the New Jersey State Pension game.

For the past 22 years, Kent has collected two sets of checks from the state. At age 74, he currently receives a $100,000 salary plus $59,000 in retirement pay a year, though he “retired” for less than a week.

Kent is one of 23 current investigators and supervisors who pocketed nearly $14 million in pension pay in addition to their salaries from the Attorney General, a New Jersey Watchdog investigation found.

On average, each officer has collared nearly $600,000 in retirement pay while in the employ of the Attorney General. Since its initial investigative report, New Jersey Watchdog obtained records of their cumulative pension totals.

The 23 employees, now under Paula T. Dow, continue to get state pension checks at a rate of $1.5 million a year. Dow's office did not respond to a request for comment.

Click here or visit www.njwatchdog.org for the full story.  Investigative reporter Mark Lagerkvist can be reached at Mark@Lagerkvist.net.


 

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NJ WATCHDOG INVESTIGATION: Attorney General’s 23 Double-Dippers Pocket Millions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

One-Day 'Retirements?' There Ought to Be a Law!

NJ ATTORNEY GENERAL'S 23 DOUBLE-DIPPERS POCKET MILLIONS; MOST RETIRE FOR ONE DAY, THEN COLLECT PENSIONS FOR LIFE

Edgar J. Hess “retired” from the New Jersey State Police at age 50, but he never left the Attorney General’s payroll. The next day, he began work at a state unit that investigates corruption.

Without really retiring, Hess has collected $712,000 in state pension checks since 2002. He currently gets $196,000 a year – an $80,000 pension plus a $116,000 salary as a lieutenant state investigator.

Hess is one of 23 double-dipping investigators and supervisors who work for Attorney General Paula T. Dow and her Division of Criminal Justice, a New Jersey Watchdog investigation revealed. In addition to their salaries, they draw pensions as retired employees of the Attorney General. Most retired for only one day.

Collectively, the 23 “retirees” receive $3.77 million a year – $1.56 million a year in pension pay plus $2.21 million in state salaries. On average, they each pocket $164,000 a year – $96,000 in salary and nearly $68,000 from pension. 

The retirement schemes are typically inside jobs – deals that quietly slip through loopholes in pension law. Like Hess, many retirees are rehired so quickly they never miss a payday from the Attorney General, who is in charge of both DCJ and State Police.  In the 23 double-dipping cases examined by New Jersey Watchdog:

  • 14 officers were rehired the day after they retired.
  • Two others were rehired within a week of retirement.
  • Only seven officers left the payroll for at least 30 days, as required by state pension rules.

Click here or visit www.njwatchdog.org for the full story.  Investigative reporter Mark Lagerkvist can be reached at Mark@Lagerkvist.net.


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Filed under double dipping, NJ State Police, nj watchdog, pension loopholes, retirees, state pension system

Meet Gov. Christie’s Million-Dollar Triple-Dipper

Meet the Governor’s Million-Dollar Triple-Dipper

CHRISTIE’S ‘RETIRED’ BUDGET GURU POCKETS $1M IN PUBLIC PAYOUTS

One of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s key advisers has received three golden parachutes from taxpayers during the past nine years.

Cabinet Secretary Louis C. Goetting IV raked home $1.1 million from two severance payouts and an early retirement deal. In addition, Goetting collects $219,000 a year from the state – a $130,000 salary plus $89,000 in pension payments.

Christie hired Goetting (pronounced “getting”) in 2010 as a budget guru to help trim the cost of government. But Goetting resembles a problem, not a solution, according to a New Jersey Watchdog analysis of his employment history. Prior to joining Christie’s senior staff:

Goetting received $190,000 plus perks when forced to resign as executive vice president of Brookdale Community College in Monmouth County, effective June 2009.

Goetting collected $180,000 in severance pay after he resigned as a vice president at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, effective Jan. 1, 2003,

That same day, Goetting “retired” as a state employee at age 51, taking advantage of a state Early Retirement Incentive Program. From that pension, he receives 89,000 a year.

So far, Goetting has triple-dipped roughly $1.1 million from public coffers. He has collected $734,000 in early retirement checks from the state in addition to $370,000 in payouts from Brookdale and UMDNJ. And that doesn’t count his pay from the governor’s office.

Goetting’s good fortune illustrates weaknesses in Christie’s pension reforms, which the governor has called his “biggest governmental victory.” In addition, Christie has publicly opposed severance deals similar to the ones Goetting has gotten.

For the full story, click here or visit www.njwatchdog.org. New Jersey Watchdog’s Mark Lagerkvist can be contacted at Mark@Lagerkvist.net.

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Filed under Brookdale Community College, double dipping, Gov. Chris Christie, Louis C. Goetting, Mark Lagerkvist, New Jersey Watchdog, UMDNJ

LD-12 Senate candidate Brown racks up Public Safety Endorsements

Old Bridge – State Senate candidate Bob Brown has received the endorsement of the New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association (PBA), New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey (PFANJ) and Firefighters’ Mutual Benefit Association (FMBA) in his campaign against Assemblyman Sam Thompson for senate seat in the newly-former 12th district. Himself a former policeman who was shot in the line of duty, Brown is committed to providing public safety personnel with the necessary resources to keep all of us safe.

“My opponent voted to gut collective bargaining, leaving the police and firefighters who protect us every day vulnerable to pay cuts and benefit losses,” said Brown. “Meanwhile, he leaches off the system by receiving a public pension and public salary at the same time, totaling over $100,000. Voters need to know that I stand for their safety and protection, while all Thompson stands for is his own fat bank account.”

State PBA President Anthony F. Weiners has sent a letter to all police households in the district praising Brown and urging members to vote for him. In the letter he says: “[Brown] is a passionate voice that law enforcement should be promoted and defended, not scapegoated by politicians who follow party bosses.”

Thompson is not only a “double dipper,” he is also a party boss – the Chairman of the Middlesex County Republican Party. Last month, he made offensive remarks about police officers who seek a second career after retirement, equating it to his own “double dipping” and has refused to issue an apology.

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Filed under 12th Legislative District, Bob Brown, Democratic Candidate, double dipping, fraternal order of police, NJ State Senate, Sam Thompson

NJ Watchdog: THE “GOLDEN” AGE OF DOUBLE-DIPPING IN MONMOUTH COUNTY

NJ Watchdog yesterday posted a follow-up to it’s story “43 TOP NJ COUNTY COPS DO THE BIG DOUBLE-DIP: HOW 16 SHERIFFS & 27 UNDERSHERIFFS POCKET MILLIONS IN PENSIONS PLUS SALARIES” by investigative reporter Mark Lagerkvist, which I posted about back in September.

The update titled “THE “GOLDEN” AGE OF DOUBLE-DIPPING IN MONMOUTH COUNTY” details the abuses of the Monmouth County Sheriffs Department and specifically names both former Monmouth County Sheriffs Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno and current Sheriff Shaun Golden, as being complacent in the hiring of and promotions of 3 current Monmouth County Undersheriff who all are politically connected, retired from well paying state jobs and started collecting their pensions, then were hired to work for the Sheriffs Department.

This practice of complacently allowing Double-Dipping by in Monmouth County by our current and former Sherriffs is even more disturbing when you consider that they have been rewarded for their actions, Guadagno going on to become Lt. Governor and Golden recently being named as Secretary of the statewide organization the Constitutional Officers Association of New Jersey (COANJ), which is a nearly century-old professional organization of the elected constitutional officers of all 21 counties who’s membership includes Sheriffs, County Surrogates, County Clerks, and Registers of Deeds and Mortgages.

Why do the Monmouth County Freeholders allow this abuse of tax payer dollars to go on?

Below is an excerpt from NJ Watchdogs update:

Three of Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden’s undersheriffs are guilty of double-dipping – not a felony or misdemeanor, just a costly reality in the world of New Jersey politics.

The most controversial of the three is Undersheriff Michael W. Donovan Jr. Donovan’s double-dipping – revealed by a New Jersey Watchdog investigative report last year

As Monmouth County sheriff in 2008, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno hired Donovan as chief in charge of law enforcement. There was an obstacle: Donovan had retired as a county investigator three years earlier. Since a sheriff’s chief officer is a position subject to the rules of the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (PFRS), Donovan faced the prospect of giving up pension checks by going back to work.

To help Donovan double-dip, Guadagno informed payroll officials Donovan was her chief warrant officer – a similar sounding but completely different position not subject to PFRS rules. In contrast, Guadagno’s own memo and organizational chart identified Donovan as her chief in charge of law enforcement.

With Guadagno’s help, Donovan pocketed $85,000 a year in retirement pay along with his new salary of $87,000. He scammed $245,000 from PFRS – $227,000 in pension pay, plus $18,000 he should have contributed to the pension fund after being re-hired.

Faced with controversy, Sheriff Shaun Golden – Guadagno’s successor – found a way to protect his office and Donovan. In February, Golden gave Donovan a raise and promoted him to undersheriff, a position not subject to PFRS rules. So Donovan continues his double-dipping ways, more lucrative than ever…..

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Filed under double dipping, Kim Guadagono, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Sheriff, New Jersey Watchdog, Shaun Golden