Governor Christie Answers a Teacher's Question About Public Service

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Governor Christie Answers a Teacher's Question About Public Service

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Title: Governor Christie Answers a Teacher's Question About Public Service
Author: Christie, Chris; Office of the Governor
Description: Uploaded on Jun 22, 2011 20th Town Hall at Fair Lawn, NJ on 06-22-2011 (Transcript Below) "Sure. First of all, most teachers, police officers, and firefighters that I've met, the good ones, go into it for a whole variety of reasons. First, because they have a passion for what they do, first and foremost. You can't do these jobs without having that. So the first thing I'd say to them is if you have a passion for doing it follow your passion. Secondly I'd say to them that teachers in New Jersey get paid well, and I'd like to see them get paid better. I'd like to see them get paid better based on how they perform. If they perform well they should make more than they make now. And I would tell them that if you get into the teaching profession that you are guaranteed to get affordable health insurance for yourself and your family for life, not just for when you're working, but for life, and you're going to get a taxpayer-funded pension when you retire if you serve the appropriate number of years. I think those are all pretty good inducements for somebody who might want to get into teaching. The average police officer's salary in New Jersey is now $90,000 a year. They get also health benefits and pension after they retire. Put aside the passion, if you're looking purely at the financial inducement, there are significant financial reasons for people to become police officers at a young age, or firefighters, because it applies equally to both, retire still at a relatively young age with a pension and with health care, and then be able to resume another career thereafter. Most of them are extraordinarily motivated well-qualified men and women who will be able to bring a great deal to the private sector after they've already had one career. There are very few careers in life where you can have one, collect a pension and health care for the rest of your life after it and have a whole other career, where you can add on to the income that you're getting from your pension and the taxpayer funding that you're getting for your health care for yourself and your family for the rest of your life. So what I would say to these folks are if the passion for your job is not enough to motivate you to do it, if you need as we all do to be concerned about how do you pay the bills, you are going into a profession where you are being promised financial security and health care from the day you walk in the door until the day you leave it and then beyond. Those seem to me when you compare them to whatever guarantees folks are getting in the private sector right now to be pretty powerful economic incentives even in or maybe especially in today's economy. So I would hope that those folks who are listening, listening to reason, and not listening to hysteria, would come to the conclusion that if I care about being a teacher and I'm passionate about helping kids learn, I'm going to have the opportunity to do that in a school where they get funded per pupil better than any place in America, where I'm going to be paid a good salary, with a possibility to make more if my proposals go through, where I'm going to be guaranteed a pension and health care for the rest of my life, and going to be able to do something that I love, and if I'm a police officer or firefighter, not only to be able to do that for twenty or twenty-five years, but then be able to have a whole other career after that where I can utilize the skills, the abilities, and the talents that are God-given and that I've developed over the time that I've been a member of the police force or the fire department. I think that would be my pep talk to the people that want to get into those professions and I think that for those people who are feeling discouraged right now because they're going to have to pay a percentage of their health insurance premium, or they're going to have to pay one or two points more toward a lifetime pension then I would suggest to you respectfully that those people have completely lost touch with reality and probably didn't have the passion to begin with."
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10929/37186
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIeZ_UKQesk
Date: 2011-09-14


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