(TRENTON) – Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic) on Wednesday released the following statement after attending a rally with toll collectors concerned about the administration’s plan to privatize toll collections:
“It’s outrageous that toll collectors are being demonized as the ones responsible for the economic problems facing our state, when in fact they’ve contributed to the state’s success through their commitment and dedication to their difficult jobs.
“I applaud the toll workers for offering $35 million in painful concessions to help the state fight through this difficult economy. The workers know they must share in the sacrifice and have offered a plan to save money and jobs.
“It was the right thing to do.
“What concerns me deeply is the administration’s continued refusal to negotiate seriously to find a way to help taxpayers while saving jobs. Their refusal to do so can only mean they place conservative ideology over the well-being of taxpayers and toll workers.
“That is the wrong thing to do..
“The toll workers are not pawns. They’re real people with families, homes and responsibilities who have devoted their working lives to this state. They’ve offered a plan to save money and jobs. Their plan deserves consideration.”