As reported by, the question of whether Governor Chris Christie and the Legislature can order judges to pay 9 percent more toward their pensions is headed to the New Jersey Supreme Court. The justices will hear arguments today in a case brought by Superior Court Judge Paul DePascale of Hudson County.

DePascale hopes to invalidate a 2011 law requiring judges to pay more toward retirement. The law hikes the judges’ pension contributions from 3 percent of their salary to 12 percent after a seven-year phase-in period. Most judges earn $165,000.

Christie initiated the law requiring higher contributions from all government employees because the state pension system is underfunded by tens of billions of dollars. Judges’ contributions were increased more than other groups. They say the result is an illegal reduction in salary.