An AP story included errors about the payroll costs of Gov. Chris Christie’s administration — and the new governor has the records to prove it.
Christie said the Associated Press story falsely put the payroll figure at nearly $2 million more than that of Gov. Corzine’s administration.
However, records show that totals obtained by the Asbury Park Press for the Corzine Administration’s salaries excluded “mobility” personnel on loan to the Governor’s Office from other departments.
Including them would bring the total salary figure for Corzine’s crew to $8.3 million — not $7 million, as the AP reported — compared with a complete $8.9 million for 117 total employees under Christie.
At least a dozen of the “mobility” personnel under Corzine pulled down more than $1.1 million among them, the records show.
A spokesman for Christie said each and every employee — including more than a dozen “mobility” types on loan from other agencies — is included and identified by name on the the Governor’s Office website.
“We have gone to great lengths to be open and transparent in all regards, including in the reporting of salary and personnel,” said Press Secretary Michael Drewniak.
“In the AP’s haste to get out of the gate first, it did so with a story that was half-reported, full of errors of fact and omission and despite administration warnings that it was wrong,” Drewniak said.
“We hope the AP will retract its story.”
The AP story also reported that the Corzine Administration had only 17 people earning salaries of $100,000 or more when at least an additional nine employees made six figures, he added. For the record: Christie has 34, all-inclusive.
Even in the nickel-and-diming, the AP came up short, Christie’s people noted.
It excluded that Christie draw a salary of $175,000, as allowed by law, while his wealthy predecessor declined a paycheck. That added another six-figure salary to the total.
Corzine also didn’t have a Lieutenant Governor, a position created by voters, which depends on the governor’s office for staff and resources. One more six-figure position ($141,000, to be exact) for Kim Guadagno.
And while we’re at it: Corzine was single. Christie’s First Lady, Mary Pat, has two staff members in the Office of Protocol. That widens the gap a bit more….
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