On April 3, 2010 I sent a very short email to the NJ Star-Ledger and cc'd Governor Christie's office. (I realize I usually write a lot. To prove the letter is short, I've pasted it to the bottom of this post.)
Today, July 6, 2010, I've received a brief, canned response from the Governor Christie administration, and nothing in the response suggests my letter was ever even read. Not much of a surprise, but still disappointing.
I'm not writing about my own opinions concerning Gov. Christie in this post. I might do that some other time.
My message to them:
For as long as I can recall there has been discussion and hand-wringing about our state's financial situation. Perennially there are excessive expenses, and insufficient revenue.
A couple of years ago I heard a news story regarding a plan in Utah that had the state operate with a 4-day workweek. (http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2008-06-30-four-day_N.htm)
State workers would work an extra 2 hours each of the 4 days, and then have an extra day off, resulting in no total reduction of hours worked.
I think this is very much worth exploring, and has the potential to save significant money, as well as reduce environmental impact, wear and tear on our highways, etc...
Thanks for your time.
Dear Mr. .....:
Thank you for your views and suggestions regarding the Fiscal Year 2011 Budget. I appreciate hearing your ideas to help restore fiscal sanity to our State.
Given these tough economic times, we had some very tough decisions to make in this year's Budget. We had to balance the need to get our State's economy back on track by not raising taxes and making sure we only spend money we have. At the same time, we must never forget our obligation to protect the most vulnerable of our State. That is why the Budget that I signed on June 29 reduces spending by nearly 9 percent, demands a higher level of efficiency and accountability across state government and maintains funding for critical programs.
I believe that while the choices we made in this year's Budget were tough, they were necessary. Today's sacrifices in which we are all sharing have put our State back on a path to lower taxes, more jobs and a place where we can all afford to live.
Again, thank you for writing. Best wishes.