New Jersey unemployment fails workers again (Opinion)
Shame on the government in Trenton. Shame on them for the lack of transparency. The lack of service. The lack of responsiveness. Shame on them for collecting huge salaries, pensions and government perks on the backs of the taxpayers while tens of thousands of New Jerseyans struggle to collect benefits that they are entitled to and thousands of small businesses who cannot operate successfully with all of the arbitrary emergency restrictions.
Today's frustration is specific to Labor Commissioner Rob Asaro-Angelo. This coward has avoided public scrutiny for the past year as his department cannot deliver services, or even take phone calls, to frustrated residents. People flood our phone lines with complaints on a nearly daily basis. The number one complaint is that when you are denied benefits you can't get a specific reason why, so you can't fix it.
Second complaint is that when you are entitled, it takes months sometimes to collect. This is totally unacceptable.
So I gave out the commissioner's number today. The number reroutes to the claim filing number, so no luck on getting an actual person in the commissioner's office.
Here's a guy collecting a huge salary and has ZERO accountability when it comes to actually doing the job. Rob Asaro-Angelo wants credit for appearing in a Facebook Town Hall then he returns to the job and things seemingly get worse. Producer Kristen went through the list of numbers on the DOL site today with no luck for those waiting on benefits.
Sadly, New Jersey government has no incentive to modernize or deliver the services that you have been paying for all these years. There is almost no Republican opposition to the current regime and the governor has no one pushing him to follow through on his campaign promise of modernizing the decades-old computers that the state government relies upon.
Only two heroes have emerged from the rubble that is NJ as the governor continues to keep the economy locked down with yet another extension of the emergency. Assemblywoman Serena Dimaso, who serves the residents of Monmouth County, has stepped up in a big way. She's currently helping more than 1,600 people take their cases to the DOL. And U.S. Rep. Chris Smith, who has served residents in the 4th Congressional District for the past three decades.
Both elected officials have put aside partisanship and concern about re-election and have stepped up to help. It's a sad state of affairs when you can count the good guys in your government on one hand.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.