Thursday, April 22, 2010

AP Corrects Disingenous Attack Piece on Gov. Christie's Administration

Right before the key vote on state budgets, the Associated Press ran a highly suspect article claiming that Gov. Chris Christie's administration was nearly twice the size of Gov. Corzine's administration and had twice the number of people making more than $100,000. Here's a typical news report:

Well, the reality is quite a bit different. In fact, the size of the executive staff is pretty much identical. Moreover, any difference in salaries is due entirely to the fact that Gov. Christie draws a salary while Gov. Corzine opted not to take a salary because of his wealth.
In an April 19 story about Gov. Chris Christie's payroll, The Associated Press reported erroneously that he is spending nearly $2 million more on salaries a year than did his predecessor, former Gov. Jon Corzine.

Treasury Department figures show the correct higher amount is about $440,000.

Because the AP had incomplete figures for all those on Corzine's payroll — some were paid by other departments but still worked for the governor — the AP also erroneously reported that twice as many people in Christie's office earn $100,000 or more than they did in Corzine's.

Treasury figures show 34 people making $100,000 or more in Christie's office, compared with 24 for Corzine in April 2009.

Corzine had a payroll of $8.43 million for 118 people, not $7 million, according to Treasury figures. Christie has 117 employees, including himself, with a payroll of $8.86 million per year. Unlike his multimillionaire predecessor, Christie collects the $175,000 salary allowed under the law.

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