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(4th LEGISLATIVE DISTRICT) – Assemblyman Paul Moriarty on Wednesday said he would introduce legislation as soon as possible to eliminate clothing allowance payments for public employees who are not required to wear uniforms or other special clothing.
Moriarty (D-Gloucester/Camden) announced his intention after the state comptroller released a report that found 48 percent of white-collar state employees receiving a $700 annual clothing allowance don’t wear uniforms or other specialized work clothing.
Clothing maintenance payments for such workers totaled more than $3 million this fiscal year.
“We’ve heard a lot of terrible instances of taxpayer money being wasted, but this may top them all,” Moriarty said. “It’s outright insanity to spend $3 million a year to provide uniforms to state workers who don’t wear uniforms. This is a mind-boggling and stupefying waste of taxpayer money. It has to stop.”
Moriarty said he intends to introduce his legislation at the next Assembly quorum. He said the bill would also require clothing allowance compensation to be more transparent so that they’re not, as the comptroller found, governed by multiple agreements.
“Taxpayers are overburdened enough paying for essential government services, let alone completely and totally wasteful ones such as this,” Moriarty said. “It’s hard to believe that we’re seeing police, firefighters and teachers laid off and property taxes going up while the state is paying a $700 clothing allowance to workers who don’t even wear uniforms. This is the new poster child for abusive government spending, and it has to end. It’s outrageous.”