Días de enfermedad pagados han llegado a New Jersey

Paid sick leave workers
A partir del 29 de octubre 2018, casi todos los trabajadores de Nueva Jersey tendrán derecho a ganar días de enfermedad pagados.

• Usted acumula horas de permiso de ausencia laboral debido a enfermedad a una tasa de 1 hora por cada 30 horas trabajadas, hasta un máximo de 40 horas de permiso por año calendario.
-Usted comienza a acumular días de permiso de ausencia laboral debido a enfermedad a partir del 29 de octubre de 2018 o de su primer día de empleo, lo que ocurra más tarde.

• Usted puede usar la ley para tomarse un tiempo libre en el trabajo para una visita al médico, para recuperarse de una enfermedad física o mental (para usted o un miembro de su familia), recuperarse de la violencia doméstica o sexual, para asistir a una conferencia de padres y maestros, o si se está cerrando una escuela o lugar de trabajo debido a una emergencia de salud pública.

• Los empleadores también deben publicar este aviso en un lugar visible y accesible en todos los sitios de trabajo.

Aprenda más visitando a la página web del Departamento de Labor en New Jersey

Vote YES on NJ Ballot Q#2 to protect gas tax funds from being raided like clean energy and health funds were

Source: Engineer’s Labor-Employer Cooperative via nj.com

New Jersey Assemblyman Dr. Tim Eustace wants New Jersey voters to know that voting YES on Ballot Question #2 will enable extremely important protections of taxpayer dollars. Election Day this year falls on Tuesday, November 8.

Here are short and long versions of the reasons it’s important to vote YES to Q2. You already know how important it is that you go vote in the first place – right?

The short version of why YES on Q2

On the gas tax issue, Assm. Eustace comments:

The New Jersey gas tax increase of 23¢ is law – and it’s a mistake to think it will go away if people vote NO on Ballot Question #2 at the polls next Tuesday. Gov. Christie’s second-in-command discussed the ballot question in a 101.5 Radio interview, revealing that either she does not understand this law, or maybe Ms. Guadagno is hoping to draw out Republican voters who believe that the gas tax will go away if they vote no. But, this is not true.

It’s essential that gas tax money be used only for transportation and that this money not become accessible to the governor for use in the general budget. Gov. Christie used over $1.2 billion from the State’s Clean Energy Fund to plug general budget holes. In order to ensure that gas tax money can only be used for transportation expenditures, vote YES to Ballot Question #2 on Election Day.”

Dr. Eustace is the NJ Assembly Environment Committee Chair.

An NJ.com editorial echoes the assemblyman’s message:

…experts attest that if all that if annual gas tax revenue were dedicated exclusively to transportation projects, we could have filled a few more potholes by now … if (taxpayers) are tired of seeing large sums ($35 million last year, higher in previous years) scraped from the gas tax for purposes other than transportation, they can do something about it on Election Day.

Now that the gas tax increase is something we’ve all got to live with, we support Ballot Question 2, a constitutional amendment that dedicates every penny of that revenue to the Transportation Trust Fund.

That means the government can no longer raid the TTF to plug other budget holes – a lockbox provision that 30 other states already have.

Road to Repair offers a short but complete statement on why a YES vote to Q2 is so important:

roadtorepair.com screenshot
Source: roadtorepair.com

The long version of why YES on Q2

On Facebook, Aaron Hyndman addressed this issue with a thorough analysis of the New Jersey gas tax ballot issue, “TO ANYONE STILL ON THE FENCE ABOUT NJ BALLOT QUESTION #2.” Hyndman is Communications Coordinator at the NJ Bike & Walk Coalition and the following is his statement:
I finally have a spare moment to contribute some thoughts regarding Ballot Question 2, so here are some things that I hope everyone will take into consideration:

First of all, there is a great deal of misinformation being spread by the Lt. Gov. and other interests that are opposed to the ballot question for reasons that are more self-serving and not purely altruistic. Too much is being said ABOUT the ballot question instead of discussing what is ACTUALLY in the ballot question, which reads as follows:

Do you approve amending the Constitution to dedicate all revenue from the State motor fuels tax and petroleum products gross receipts tax to the Transportation Trust Fund? read more

Listed: Christie’s dismal record of caring for New Jersey

bridgegateIt isn’t just the George Washington Bridge that Christie has obstructed in his home state. Here’s an excellent list from One New Jersey showing many of the ways Gov. Chris Christie has failed to do his job. Sections include:

  • Jobs Lost – NJ Falling Behind
  • New Jersey Families Falling Behind Crumbling Infrastructure & Rising Costs
  • Abusing Taxpayer Money
  • Taxpayer-Funded Corporate Bailouts
  • And No Job Gains Budget Mismanagement: Costing NJ Taxpayers

New federal sign regulations drive change on the Garden State Parkway

exit shuffle at GSP woodbridge
On the GSP, New Exit 41 opens in Atlantic City area today to provide direct access to Jimmie Leeds Road. Until now, Motorists have accessed the road by driving through the AC service area.

And in a few days, Woodbridge area drivers in the low 130s will get a bit of an exit shuffle on either side of the highway. NJ.com’s @LarryHiggs explains:

What’s changing? On the northbound parkway, Exit 131 will become Exit 132, Feeney said. On the southbound parkway, Exit 131 will become Exit 132 and Exit 131A will become Exit 131, Feeney said.

Southbound drivers also will have to get used to a new sign and a new sign color. The destination on the overhead sign for the new Exit 131 will change from “Metropark” to “Wood Avenue South.” The sign color will change from blue to the tradition exit sign green, he said. read more

New Jersey County Clerks

A more extensive list containing both County Clerk and Board of Election contact information, including fax numbers, is available here.

Atlantic County Clerk
5901 Main Street
CN 2005
Mays Landing, NJ 08330
Bergen County Clerk
One Bergen County Plaza
Hackensack, NJ 07601
Burlington County Clerk
49 Rancocas Road
Mount Holly, NJ 08060
Camden County Clerk
2015 The Mall at Voorhees Town Center, 2nd Floor
Voorhees, NJ 08043
Cape May County Clerk
7 North Main Street
DN 109
Cape May Court House, NJ 08210-3096
Cumberland County Clerk
Court House Building
60 West Broad Street
Bridgeton, NJ 08302
Essex County Clerk
Hall of Records
465 Martin Luther King Blvd.
Newark, NJ 07102
Gloucester County Clerk
Court House
P.O. Box 129
Woodbury, NJ 08096
Hudson County Clerk
257 Cornelison Avenue
Jersey City, NJ 07302
Hunterdon County Clerk
Hall of Records
71 Main Street
Flemington, NJ 08822
Mercer County Clerk
100 Court House Annex
209 South Broad Street, P.O. Box 8068
Trenton, NJ 08650
Middlesex County Clerk
P.O. Box 1110
New Brunswick, NJ08903-1110
Monmouth County Clerk
33 Mechanic Street
Freehold, NJ 07728
Morris County Clerk
Administration & Records Building
P.O. Box 315
Morristown, NJ 07963-0315
Ocean County Clerk
P.O. Box 2191
Toms River, NJ 08754
Passaic County Clerk
401 Grand Street, Room 130
Paterson, NJ 07505
Salem County Clerk
P.O. Box 18
92 Market Street
Salem, NJ 08079
Somerset County Clerk
P.O. Box 3000
20 Grove Street
Somerville, NJ 08876
Sussex County Clerk
Sussex County Clerk’s Office
83 Spring Street, Suite 304
Newton, NJ 07860
Union County Clerk
2 Broad Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07207
Warren County Clerk
413 Second Street
Belvidere, NJ 07823

Expanded student demographic data now on ELC website

chart of funding weighted per pupilOver the years, Education Law Center (ELC) has become the “go-to” source where parents, policymakers and advocates can find high quality, in-depth data and other useable information on New Jersey’s public schools. This organization is committed to continuing to provide timely and relevant data in a highly functional and interactive format and is pleased to announce that visitors can now find an expanded range of student data on their website: racial/ethnic composition, poverty rates, limited English proficiency rates, and special education rates of NJ public school students, whether enrolled in district schools or charter schools.

A visitor to the “Data & Research” page on the ELC site will see highly interactive charts and maps displaying student enrollment data by race/ethnicity for school districts across the state. Below that, a second data set displays enrollment in special programs. Interactive elements are in red.

The maps permit a quick scan of the current statewide landscape and identify spatial patterns. Bar charts, organized by District Factor Group (DFG; the classification system used by the New Jersey Department of Education to organize districts by socioeconomic status), illustrate how dramatically student characteristics differ by district type. Data can also be filtered by county, and charts can be sorted in multiple ways (for example, by district or by a chosen indicator in ascending or descending order).

The ELC website also makes it easier to examine historical trends by providing two options for viewing data. The first option compares counties, districts or schools within the same year, with over a decade’s worth of data. Using the second option, a site visitor can choose state, county, district or school level data in order to view longitudinal trends. Using the tabs at the top of the display, it’s possible to toggle between views. Any selections made on one tab will carry over to a subsequent tab.

Telling the Story with Data

The map displaying NJ’s diverse student population illustrates the high degree of racial segregation across the state. The DFG chart can be used to filter the data to show the interplay of geography, socioeconomic status and racial segregation. Filtering the map to view only DFG “A“ districts, for example, it is clear that these districts with the lowest socioeconomic status are predominately located in the northeastern and southern portions of the state and serve large numbers of black and Hispanic children. Alternatively, DFG “J” districts – the wealthiest in the state – are almost exclusively found in the northern part of the state and are more likely to be majority white districts.

The second tab shows student enrollments by race/ethnicity for counties, districts and schools from 1999-2000 through 2011-2012. For example, the data show that in 2011-12, Bergen County student enrollment was the highest in the state (over 130,000 students), while Salem County enrollment was the lowest (less than 12,000 students). Scanning the chart also shows that Sussex County enrolled the largest proportion of white students (88%) and Essex County the smallest (27%). The racial distributions of students in districts and individual schools are available in this view.

In the second set of charts and maps, the data show that while the number of students classified as free and reduced lunch or Limited English Proficiency is related to a district’s socioeconomic status, special education is more evenly distributed across the state. The second tab displays the three indicators together, making it possible to explore how these student characteristics are related. The chart can be expanded so that district data within counties can be viewed and then further expanded to show the schools within districts.

The third tab shows longitudinal data illustrating, for example, the recent increase in student poverty. The number of English language learners and special education students, for the years in which data are available, is more stable.

“The beauty of these data sets is that they make it possible to access over a decade of demographic data in one place,” said Dr. Danielle Farrie, ELC’s Research Director. “The information is displayed in an easy to understand format that can be manipulated by visitors to ELC’s website in order to find the exact data they need, whether they are looking for state level trends or the particular characteristics of an individual school.”

Just how bad is Chris Christie?

Why wouldn’t wealthy conservatives love Chris Christie? He zealously protects their interests: keep the poor working without perks and benefits for the benefit and comfort of the wealthy. Eradicate environmental friendly laws that put more value on people’s health than on businesses dumping toxic waste in communities where people live or incinerating it into their air supply; on developing projects that deplete, or destroy, natural resources which are everyone’s concern and responsibility, or pollute beyond imagination the land they occupy. Get the most money possible away from the public school system because an educated customer is not the most easily manipulated consumer or citizen. Raise transportation costs so high people need to work longer hours just to pay the cost of traveling to and from work. Fierce political competition? No problem, just beat them with a bat, call them names, or arrest them!

Some people have spent time investigating Christie’s shadowy career. Here’s what they say:

  • Prosecutorial Misconduct in the United States Attorney’s Office, New Jersey District
  • NJ Gov Chris Christie: The good and the bad
  • Superior Court Judge Peter Doyne’s, “fact-finding hearings found Gov. Chris Christie’s $1 billion in cuts to public schools this year left schools falling well short of the state constitution’s guarantee of a “thorough and efficient” education system.”
  • Christie killed the single largest infrastructure project in the northeast United States, the ARC tunnel project, which would have added much needed public transit capacity between New Jersey and New York would also have created many needed jobs. The Port Authority was also making sure that ethnic minority-owned companies got their fair share of contracts. Empowering the poor with good jobs, public transit commuters with easier rides and independent entrepreneurs with solid contracts goes against the Christie Creed: exploit, demean, oppress; rob of hope and peace of mind all the little people, all the time. So the ARC project was doomed from the moment Christie took office.
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    Christie Declares War On the Poor

    I can’t really add anything to this succinctly phrased statement by William Colon. He lays out for easy review, the drastic funding cuts Christie has enacted, which strike blow after blow to the most vulnerable of our state.

    (Read article in Spanish)

    Christie’s War On The Poor

    Written by William Colon, executive director of the Latino Institute, Inc. and a contributing writer for the Hall Institute of Public Policy.

    “We had a ‘war on poverty’ once, and we lost it, and since poverty is still here, let’s eliminate the poor amongst us.”

    This seems to be New Jersey’s prevailing public philosophy.

    Last week, with a few strokes of the pen, the governor killed attempts by the state legislature to restore funds to various programs and initiatives that were designed to help the poor. The list is very long, and we will mention just a few.

    Among the cuts are millions of dollars in tuition aid which were used by poor students to pay for college, women’s health services, legal services for the poor in Camden and Newark, and the New Jersey After 3 program, dedicated to the provision of after-school educational services in Newark and Paterson. The governor cut money to child care centers for urban children, adding new rules to make it virtually impossible for undocumented immigrants to have access to those services, and changed the rules for Medicaid so that working poor adults cannot earn more than the absurd amount of $105 a week if they want to be covered by health insurance.

    He also eliminated funds for family planning services clinics and preventive health services for pregnant women. He ended funding for a program which assisted poor AIDS patients with their life-saving drugs, and eviscerated the funding for the assistance of the blind and visually impaired. He also cut funds for programs supporting frail and sick elderly.

    And he shot directly at the heart of the Latino community, by eliminating the restoration of $2.3 million the state legislature had designated to support programs at the Center for Hispanic Policy, Research and Development (CHPRD).

    Last year, the governor demonstrated what he thought about Hispanics and their needs, by eliminating in toto $8.5 million in programs that provide direct services to the Latino community. Now, going a step further, not only he took away the funds, but added odious and perverse rules so that our people are forced to live in abject poverty, or better, to move elsewhere.

    To facilitate this nefarious and mean-spirited agenda, knowing that the majority of Latinos live in cities or urban centers like Newark, Jersey City, Passaic, Perth Amboy and Paterson, he also cut funds to these cities, impacting local property taxes (there are will be no property tax decreases in the foreseeable future), and therefore, impacting rents for poor tenants.

    It is ironic that those cuts will also impact Latino mayors Awilda Diaz and Felix Roque, who had kissed and embraced Mr. Christie in the past. I wonder what they think now of the governor after he has limited their ability to carry on their pet projects.

    It should be noted that while these cuts were made, the governor decided to send additional funds to the richest school districts in the state. In addition, he doubled the budget surplus. I suppose this was done to ensure there is enough money in the bank to keep up with the corporate welfare grants which have been promised to projects such as Xanadu and Panasonic.

    A few weeks ago, his satraps hypocritically told us they had a “home” for Latinos in state government, as they announced their “new” -lean and mean-programs under the CHPRD. What they forgot to tell us is that the house they want us to call “home” has no door, no roof, no toilet and is full of holes.

    As last year, the Hispanic Directors Association, led by Guillo Beythag-Maldonado and Mario Vargas, took up the defense for the Latino community. Working together with Assemblywoman Nellie Pou, the legislature restored programs for our people, only to be slashed and removed once again by the governor. He, who has praised us with words at public events; he, who condemns us with his actions.

    The actions which confirm an anti-Hispanic agenda, dedicated to get us out of the Garden State.

    Governor Christie declared war on the poor. The vast majority of our Latino people are poor, so he also declared war on Hispanics.

    There is an old, secular Spanish proverb which states “En guerra avisada, no muere gente”

    It means: if you have been warned that war is imminent, take cover, run for the hills; maybe you can save your life.

    Article orginally published at Hall Institute of Public Policy

    NJ’s pension debacle: time to rethink pensions?

    A recent article gives a view of some of the steps which have caused a public employees pension fund debacle in New Jersey. This very informative, well researched report, is written by a police officer. It seems to be lacking only one piece of essential information: were pension funds actually looted by New Jersey governors, or were employee pay-ins simply not matched, at the 8.5% rate stipulated by law when the funds were created? No matter the answer, it’s apparent that there are serious problems with the pension fund’s management.

    I don’t love the US pension system. In my mind, it’s faulty in several essential ways:

  • It withdraws almost unimaginably huge amounts of money from the economy and reach of the general public, and
  • Hands those funds over to banks and other financial institutions – which use them as capital to invest in ways that further their own long-term ambitions (while incidentally, returning some profit back to investors in order to keep them happy and keep the capital rolling in).
  • In the long run this has created a loop which dictates that the financial institutions and the major corporate beneficiaries they invest in, will become more powerful and wealthy every year. Others will become increasingly subject to the will of the institutions which hold their money and use it to buy more interest in the processes society requires to be viable (electrical grids, water delivery, oil and coal mining, transportation), thereby guaranteeing that the big guys’ wealth will increase any time a switch is thrown, a faucet is turned on, a vehicle is driven, a delivery of goods is made.
  • Pensions have become a subtle mind-control tool, teaching participants to place faith – and sometimes great sums of money – in the hands of their employers, and suspend their cogent grasp of reality when, by various mechanisms, employers shaft participants out of the monies they thought were guaranteed to be their retirement funds – and then ask them to manage their disappointment, dismay, frustration and even rage . . . reasonably, peaceably and “maturely”. The shafting mechanisms are various: fire an employee months before s/he becomes pension eligible; raid pension funds and refuse to match the agreed-upon payments into the fund that employees pay in.
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