OPINION: Let’s “Drain The Swamp” In Toms River

Photo courtesy Ocean County Scanner News

While many of the residents of Toms River are having a hard time trying to afford their healthcare payments, people with political connections are able to obtain healthcare cheaply.

If you are powerful Republican or Democrat looking for cheap benefits, you can get appointed a commissioner on the Toms River Municipal Utilities Authority. Once appointed, you can receive $24,852 worth of health insurance for only $1,028 a year. A commissioner on the MUA doesn’t even work full time. They attend monthly meetings that last about 30 minutes for which they receive a salary of $2,000 plus benefits.

Governor Christie attempted to end this abuse of political power by not allowing part-time political appointees to participate in the state health program. Unfortunately, the Toms River Council and MUA found a way to get around this by going with a private health carrier.

The MUA Commission should be a volunteer board just like all the rest of the boards in Toms River. People serve on the Planning Board, Board of Adjustment and the Board of Education without pay or any benefits.

It is time for Toms River Council to pass an ordinance removing these benefits and stop rewarding their friends.

 

Nels Luthman
Toms River

 

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