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Taxpayers spend $15K on Martinez trips

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Posted: Friday, July 4, 2014 7:00 pm | Updated: 6:25 pm, Sat Jul 5, 2014.

Is Gov. Susana Martinez making out-of-state trips to raise campaign cash or to watch sporting events?

Information released by the Martinez administration seems to indicate she has done a little of both.

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Welcome to the discussion.

5 comments:

  • Jennifer Bizzarro posted at 12:44 pm on Sun, Jul 6, 2014.

    Jennifer_Bizzarro Posts: 481

    Mr. Neal,

    Thank you, sir. Math has never been my strongest point, so I had my husband go over my calculations with me this time. He used to work for the IRS in audits so he can find pennies where there used to be gaping canyons! Please accept this in the spirit in which it is intended--when it comes to math, I admit I need his help.

    I am wrong in comparing the percentages of unequal values while you are quite correct on the annual salary calculation. state employees and their health care premiums are withheld 26 times per annum as state taxpayers are paid every other week.

    So. Accepting a figure of $300 for a bi-weekly healthcare premium for a family times 26 weeks, the healthcare contribution becomes $780.00 per year. This figure includes mandatory PERA, medical, dental, vision and a small amount for Flex Spending to cover the uncovered prescription or hospitalization benefits.

    The state-employed taxpayer receives a 3% raise. Based upon a $30,000 salary, the raise is $900 per year. Divided by 26 pay periods, it comes to $110 per pay check, $55 per week, or simply $2.10 per hour before taxes.


     
  • Peter Neal posted at 9:38 pm on Sat, Jul 5, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 292

    Fuzzy math. Assuming a salary of 30 K per year, and a monthly health plan premium of 300.00, the employee would see a raise of $900.00 per year, along with an increase of $360.00 per year (10%) on the health premiums, resulting in a net raise of $560.00 per year.

     
  • Jennifer Bizzarro posted at 2:51 pm on Sat, Jul 5, 2014.

    Jennifer_Bizzarro Posts: 481

    Mr. Cat,

    I must agree. This is certainly faulty logic at its best, especially when compounded by a comparison with a sitting governor to one long out of office and not likely to return.

    Susana has never been “austere” (except perhaps in matters of personal attire and home furnishings), in any of her political dealings: those deals in Texas and Arizona were not without some recompense, nor were the recent scholastic “agreements” in New Jersey and Florida or the infamous racetrack deal that is supposed to be simply a part of our imaginations.

    There are BILLIONS in the state coffers, yet Susana becomes “austere” with the people she swore to serve. Teachers and children depend “on the kindness of strangers” to survive; mental health care is outsourced to another state, leaving thousands unattended. Last week, however, the governor displayed her mathematics capacity to perfection: the 24,000+ state workers were “gifted” with a 3% raise—then presented with a 10% increase in healthcare costs. A reasonable person would see that those taxpayers who work for her just received a tax increase and a 7% smaller paycheck. That’s austere.

    A vote is still a thing of value in this country, not to be taken so lightly as to mix metaphors to justify its misuse. If we see an abuse of power, we must work to end it immediately rather than assume it could be worse, was worse, or there is no good choice. If what we have is not good enough, it is time for change.

     
  • Franklin Cat posted at 12:10 pm on Sat, Jul 5, 2014.

    Franklin Cat Posts: 4

    I don't care who is the better "candidate". When I get to the voting booth my thoughts are about which of the two is going to sign the bills that actually help out the average person and the home-grown businesses of this state instead of signing the bills that do just the opposite by giving out tax breaks and tax dollars to out-of-state corporations. If your voting is based on personality and who has the nicer smile, all too often that is all you get. I want someone who will work to make the average person better off regardless of how they come off on TV. Voting for public office is not the same as voting for prom queen.

     
  • Andrew Lucero posted at 5:07 am on Sat, Jul 5, 2014.

    Andrew Lucero Posts: 133

    I may not be the biggest fan of Susanna. But even I have to admit this a non issue. Heck compared to the travel expenses for Bill Richardson, Susanna looks down right austere.

    I know Dem's are desperate and are going to try anything to unseat Susanna, but they are going to have to do much, MUCH better than this to change my mind. Again, I am not her biggest fan. I will have to hold my nose to vote for her come November. And as much as it pains me to say this, she is an infinitely better candidate than King is. Which isn't saying much. Sadly, there are no better options.

     

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