New Jersey pays public pensions to private groups

AP News
Posted: Nov 18, 2009 1:17 PM

New Jerseyans are paying $1.3 million in pensions to 62 retirees who work for private groups at a time when the state's pension system is on the financial brink.

The League of Municipalities, the School Boards Association and the Association of Counties are privately run by high-paid executives and staffs. But they were granted pension rights by lawmakers decades ago.

An analysis by The Star-Ledger of Newark and Record of Bergen County's Statehouse bureau shows 107 non-government employees have combined pensionable salaries of more than $7 million.

Bill Dressel earns $191,000 a year as executive director of the state League of Municipalities. Dressel says the league saves taxpayers' money.

Gov.-elect Chris Christie is scheduled to speak at the group's annual convention in Atlantic City on Thursday.