As reported in the Trentonian on March 12, 2010, Governor Chris Christie is looking privatize State jobs. Yesterday, Governor Christie created a task force to look at ways to privatize State jobs to save money as he tries to find a plug for a projected $11 billion budget deficit for the 2011 fiscal year.

Christie signed an executive order creating the five-person group to look at “every aspect of the way government does business.” He said privatization could narrow the scope of public services provided by the State’s nearly 75,000 workers and increase efficiency. Christie also stated that he would have ordered the audit even if New Jersey was not in dire economic need. Privatizing jobs would inevitably mean layoffs for State workers, but Christie said he had not asked the task force to come back with a specific level of savings.     

The creation of the task force comes just days after the new Republican Governor said he was wrong to think he could alter a deal Governor Corzine made with State workers that allowed them to keep pay raises and take furloughs in exchange for a no-layoff pledge. Democrats estimate that for every 1,000 workers laid off, the State would realize $30 million to $40 million in savings. However, according to Bob Master, spokesman for the Communications Workers of America District 1, privatization is a “failed tactic from the past that’s based on an ideological hostility to government.” Specifically, he indicated, “you get a real deterioration of services and you don’t save any money.” 

Governor Christie’s potential privatization could have an enormous impact upon New Jersey Public Safety Officers. As such, please continue to check this blog periodically to ascertain updates regarding privatization and the workers it will affect.