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Deep Layoffs Take Effect In Camden

CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) — Some firefighters turned in their helmets and police officers their badges Tuesday as part of deep municipal layoffs destined to further erode the quality of life in Camden, already one of the nation’s most impoverished and crime-ridden cities.

About 335 workers, representing one-sixth of the local government work force, lost their jobs, according to Mayor Dana Redd. It was worst in the public safety departments, where nearly half the police force and close to one-third of the city’s firefighters were laid off.

Laid-off firefighters walked eight blocks together from the police union hall to Fire Department headquarters, snaking past City Hall, then lined up their helmets in front of the building, picked them back up and started to turn them in along with their other gear.

“It’s one of the worst days in the history of Camden,” said Ken Chambers, president of the firefighters union.

Redd blamed the public safety employee cuts on their unions, saying they have not been willing to make job-saving concessions or accept the reality that the state government will no longer bail out the city as it has for the past two generations.

“Instead of protecting and serving the city, the residents of Camden, they’re choosing to protect their high salaries,” she said.

The mayor said she was willing to continue negotiating with unions to try to reach cost savings that would allow the city to bring back some of the laid-off workers.

Redd said a proposal to the rank-and-file police union, the Fraternal Order of Police, was to be voted on Wednesday. She would not say exactly what the proposal entailed or how many jobs it could save. But she said that if the unions agree to concessions, about 100 police officers and most of the firefighters could be brought back.

Chambers said residents should not expect to be safe as the number of fire companies is reduced. He said the union will continue to meet with city officials to try to reach a deal under which some firefighters could be brought back.

Police officers had begun turning in their badges Monday as it became clear that no last-minute deal was going to save many jobs.

Located directly across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, Camden is rampant with open drug-dealing, prostitution and related crimes. More than half of Camden’s 80,000 residents, mostly black and Hispanic, live in poverty.

A local pastor says “the fear quotient has been raised,” and a police union took out a full-page newspaper advertisement last week warning that Camden would become a “living hell” if layoffs were not averted.

The city was the nation’s second-most dangerous based on 2009 data, according to CQ Press, which compiles such rankings. Camden ranked first the previous two years. In 2009, the city had 2,380 violent crimes per 100,000 residents—more than five times the national average, the FBI said.

The anti-crime volunteer group Guardian Angels says it will patrol Camden, as it has Newark, where there were major police layoffs in November.

The Fire Department has already been relying on help from volunteer departments in neighboring towns. Interim Fire Chief David Yates, who retired Jan. 1, has warned that that layoffs will increase response times.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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One Comment

  1. Kevin says:

    More wonderful news about the current and highly advanced state of our Union….

  2. Jon, Tampa, FL says:

    The unions have had a good ride, but now its time to realize what it is costing taxpayers. There benefits, pensions, and salaries are unsustainable.

  3. perseus317 says:

    Too many people in the city are used to being taken care of. People there have to take responsibility for their lives. The large degree of unemployment is due to the fact that most of the workers are poorly educated, and qualify for only the lowest paying jobs. Drug use and alcoholism is rampant in the city, and often causes workers who are addicted to lose their jobs, because they are unreliable. It is a difficult problem, but the people in the city have to work to climb out of the hole that many have dug for themselves.

  4. eddy james says:

    Now according to past union actions, you can probable expect to see fires started by “laid off firemen” and or crimes by out of work cops. all part of the lefts effort to scare citizens into giving in to outrageous union demands.

    It’s always the same, instead of laying off pencil pushers and office workers when money is short. they claim it’s always has to be the firemen,cops,or teachers and ever notice libraries are often included in services to be cut. but never go after their rolls Royce medical plans, or the incredible pensions or even the work related trips to the ritzy locations and the $1000 plus a night hotel they are forced to stay in. Their cell phones and government cars are to precious to let go, instill enough fear in the citizens and they know you’ll give in to their outrageous demands, after all whats a few billion more to you the tax payer when you get such loyal, trustworthy selfless servants in return.

  5. Sister Honky Tonk says:

    Why not lay off all those damn bureaucrats. This is one of the best reasons that there should be NO government employees unions.

  6. fonzie says:

    how many police/firemen could be hired with the money wasted on that hotel in India and that wasted time in Hawai?

  7. J Allen says:

    Just what Camden deserves! Why should the rest of NJ pay to keep it or the criminals that live there alive? Surely there should be no federal bailout. You voted for this– live or die because of it.

  8. Bogey says:

    Hire as many other out of work firefighters and police officers as you can because they are ready to work. Good pay and a sane retirement. Put an end to the unions for “public unions” like Regean did with the air traffic controllers. Send them all packing. Put someone in charge that will cleanse the filth of the city without hesitation and with impunity. With full support of the city council to take your City back from the criminals. Take this opportunity to make a difference. If these guys were really that good you would not have the crime rate you do. Time to upgrade from overpaid whiners to real law enforcement people!

  9. tg says:

    Cities like Camden should go bankrupt and have the courts renegotiate all saleries, contracts, pensions etc and stay within budget. To do otherwise is madness!

  10. workforlivn says:

    5% white

    1. Ben says:

      I hope the 5% get out safely……………………..let the ‘other’ 95% do what they do best…..

  11. Smokeraven says:

    “It was worst in the public safety departments, where nearly half the police force and close to one-third of the city’s firefighters were laid off.”

    In the worst city in the US the first people you lay off are half the police and 1/3 of the fire department? Who elected these idiots?

    1. J Baustian says:

      We don’t know if these are the first layoffs; the article does not go into detail about previous budget cuts.

      One solution would be to hire non-union security officers and firefighters. I suspect there are a number of unemployed persons around the country who might sign up for these jobs.

    2. Cowboy says:

      Wasn’t it the same people who ‘live’ there?

  12. luckydog says:

    This is the “change” Obama was taling about!

  13. DJH says:

    No surprise here, unrealistic and unsustainable compensation and benefits models, a state and local gov’t that never saw a social issue they shouldn’t spend money on and a state house bent on having the American people bail them out!
    There is 1, actually 2 constants in each of the major cities experiencing massive budget shortfalls and unfunded pension liabilities; long term democrat control w/ massive social engineering (all of which are failures) and a high percentage of unionis/workers. Hmmmmmm….

    The union wonks need to find new talking points – the American people, in every single credible poll and survey are not buying what the unions are selling. Add to that unions represent less than 7% of the private work force and, well their empty arguements are falling on deaf ears! I have my own retirement to worry about and my childrens education – bailing out overly generous and completely unsustainable union pensions doesn’t even reach my radar!

    1. KellyVanRijn says:

      Wow. Well put. And to all those unions who cry about how the American worker is best served by union representation, I have two words for you: Steel Industry.

  14. curtis says:

    when was the last time the police prevented any crime in any city? Oh yeah, I almost forgot, If not for the quick actions of one of our wonderful FHP representatives, I would have driven nearly 1 mile without my seat belt on. thank god for bloated worthless femalefhp officers who keep the dangerous elements like myself off the streets while contributing to their retirement. I sure wouldn’t want them to risk life or limb by actually going after thieves and child rapist. Why can’t we get that lucky down here (layoffs). Sleep well america.

    1. Off Duty says:


  15. Zoinks says:

    What’s great is that the residents of Camden know that their city is a burned-out hellhole that has been created by past leadership in Trenton and that nobody there can be trusted to be a decent human being.

    The only reason they have lived there has been the enormous handouts from the government, which has turned the place into a festering sore of human wreckage. Now that they don’t have the government handouts, they’re all wondering what they’re going to do to prevent the Apocalypse.

    Their graft and corruption filled political class has for the past 20 years set the stage for Camden’s fiery demise.

  16. Richard A. says:

    You could save money relatively painlessly by cutting by a percentage.
    Somehow I think a lot of administrators in government and education (especially education-it’s very well known) that are making $100 K and are only producing and circulation paperwork and attending meetings.
    And the unions are so entrenched, as are the politicians, you have to get their cooperation to reduce their power and the money spent on them. Which is impossible.

  17. Richard A. says:

    Too many politics in Camdem to worry about things like police and fire protection. There are a LOT of things to cut before police and fire protection-politicians do this so the public FEELS the pain, and everybody gets disturbed because of safety. If you look at their budget, you’ll see a relatively small amount is spent on police and fire.
    Get rid of all government that isn’t for sefety, and I’m not talking OSHA, or parking tickets (which are out of sight because it’s hard to defend people breaking the law) building code enforcement (I’d rather have a cop on the streets protecting me from robberies than caring about a fence that is too high or a building that’s the wrong color or similar. If they put out public services out to bid (garbage dept of transportation, planning commision, enviromental, fish and game, )Just the educational mess, if it was ‘put out to bid’ would save enough to take care of safety requirements. But the politics ‘trump’ the actual safety so you have politicians making these decisions to ‘punish’ the public.
    Good luck New Jersey with the politicans and unions there, you need it!!

  18. George Morvey says:

    I wonder if the two idiots in D.C., Menendez and Lautenberg will chime in on this situation.

  19. R Daily Bred says:

    If Camden is #1 in crime then obviously the cops aren’t getting the job done. Fire all the cops and firefighters, grab some of that fence on the Mexican border, electrify it and surround this cesspool, problem solved.

  20. Ratt says:

    Nostromo said; “I like how I’ve had the entire board responding to me all day.”

    That’s becuase we have to keep the roaches in the light of day.

    1. Nostromo says:

      That’s an ad-hominem statement and against the rules.

      l o l

      1. Ratt says:


        That’s an ad-hominem statement and against the rules.

        l o l

        I reside in Louisi-Yana, I don’t think the general population of Philadelphia residents will notice my absense.

      2. Nostromo says:

        True, ‘Ratt’, no one will in any location.

  21. akinco says:

    you can thank the so-called public “service” unions for this mess. their tantrum throwing bosses squeezed the good folks of new jersey to the point where they now have to start cutting POLICE and FIRE services just to make good on the remaining UNION CONTRACTS. it’s time we grow up, America, and realize that just because you want something doesn’t mean you should get it.

  22. J. Saia says:

    Redd blamed the public safety employee cuts on their unions, saying they have not been willing to make job-saving concessions or accept the reality that the state government will no longer bail out the city as it has for the past two generations.

    They have made concessions, but they were not accepted. And public safety employees are not paid excessively, expecially considering risks of the job and in such a dangerous city. And how is it that Redd and her cronies were given raises not long ago? What concessions did she/they make? What a hypocrit! Just another example of corrupt politics in these parts. Camden has lots of problems and so will the surrounding towns in the near future. (BTW, i don’t live in Camden, I’m not a public employee, nor a union member, just a realist.

    1. akinco says:

      “And public safety employees are not paid excessively, expecially (sic) considering risks of the job and in such a dangerous city”. to quote the governor, “then go someplace else”. i’ve had it up to HERE with the UNION rhetoric that these jobs are dangerous – like we don’t already know that! of COURSE they are dangerous! but MOST folks in these fields do the work because they want to help people, not because of the inflated paychecks. unions don’t level the playing field, they ruin it.

  23. Ratt says:

    Nostromo said;”No threat.
    All you need do is read the news. The lack of services is degrading society’s ability to respond. Thus lay-offs. What you fear’s the reality caused by austerity. ”

    Hmmm, you mean The Gov’t’s ability to respond, eh ? Sounds like a threat to me. Pay up, or Pay.

    Hey Nostromo, instead of trying to redistribute the wealth here, you think you can talk the 40,000 Illegals and Blacks in Camden to pay their fair share of Taxes, oh , that’s right, you don’t have to pay Taxes if you are on Welfare.

    1. Nostromo says:

      “…you think you can talk the 40,000 Illegals and Blacks in Camden to pay their fair share of Taxes…”

      Inform la migra.

      I like how I’ve had the entire board responding to me all day.

  24. toldya says:

    Just pass more gun control laws. That’ll make it safer.

    1. jb80538 says:

      I’m sure you meant that as a joke!

  25. bill_a_bob says:

    Wasn’t this the first 5 minutes of Robocop?

    1. Cowboy says:

      Pretty much

  26. Melvin says:

    Have the politicians who got Camden into debt walk the streets to provide protection. Why are the politicians that passed bogus budgets allowed to get a free pass on public anger.

    why isn’t that political parasite former Gov. John Corzine sitting in jail for running up the debt in New Jersey? What about all those corrupt mayors, why are they still be allowed to roam the streets without shame?

    1. Skep41 says:

      Because they’re ALL Democrats. The story doesnt mention that fact or the fact that none of this is happening in red states. If you’re going to vote for any Democrat for any office you should expect this result.

  27. John says:

    Always the police or firemen…get rid of sanitation, dmv, school board, etc privatize!
    Get rid of the unions

    1. Nostromo says:

      That was tried during the Civil War I.

      You see, we’re a union of states here.

      1. Cowboy says:

        With State Rights

      2. Nostromo says:

        And responsibilities to protect citizens.

        With rights come the responsibilities.

      3. Cowboy says:

        Actually, courts have said that police departments have no legal responsibility to protect you.

        And other than in their Constitutions, where are those state ‘responsibilities’?

      4. Nostromo says:

        What ever’s in their respective constitutions.

  28. Maret says:

    As long as Wall Street and the bankers are happily make profits and getting their annual bonus, who are we to complain?

    1. Nostromo says:

      Some’d have them pay even lower taxes.

      Or none whatsoever.

      1. Cowboy says:

        Like most of Camden?

      2. Nostromo says:

        Even less than any in Camden.
        Few in Camden have off-shored accounts being disclosed by Wikileaks.

      3. Cowboy says:

        Camden, NJ has a per-capita income of $9,815$

    2. Cowboy says:

      So go to work on Wall Street.

      1. Nostromo says:

        Now I’m retired.
        Which is why I can fritter-away the afternoon doing this.

      2. Cowboy says:

        Was responding to Maret

    3. Cowboy says:

      I’ve been to Camden. Tell your imaginary stories about paying taxes to people who haven’t been there.

      1. jsaia says:

        I’ve been to Camden…worked there for 25+ years and watched revitalization that seems to have slowed. I felt relatively safe so long as I didn’t have to walk or drive through the streets going to and coming from work before and after rush hour. Now, after the layoffs, I would be afraid, very afraid. A small tax base will not support public safety. Certain entities were given tax breaks as an incentive to locate in Camden, which does not contribute to the tax base. So what’s left? As long as there are government buildings, hospitals, edcuation facilities, businesses, etc. there, public safety is essential.

      2. Cowboy says:

        Excuse me, but wasn’t Camden the crime capital BEFORE the cutbacks?

  29. Dumber says:

    There just aren’t any jobs out there…unless you want to work 40hours per week.

  30. SenseMaker says:

    Okay- if the taxes paid go back to Reagan or even Bush or Clinton era the Gov’t. SPENDING should go back to same levels…

    1. Nostromo says:

      Immediately the balance would be struck.
      Balance the budget at those rates as did President Clinton and cap spending.
      Then turn some attention to equitable trade deals to stem off-shoring.

    2. Cowboy says:

      Excellent point.

      Social programs were a much smaller percent of national GDP

      1. Cowboy says:

        Government spending was 28% of national GDP under Eisenhower.

        Now it is 43%

      2. SenseMaker says:

        Exactly my point.

  31. Nostromo says:

    A week’s worth of paying for the conflict in Iraqghanistan could keep Camden and Philly in police for 10 years.

    No one seems to mind the profligate expenditure required for conflict.

    It’s like hidden taxes.

    1. Nostromo says:

      A dearth of responses to this one, huh?

      I thought everyone loved themselves some lower taxes?

    2. Cowboy says:

      The national defense is in the COnstitution.

      Welfare and wealth redistribution are not.

      1. Nostromo says:

        Waste’s not written-in nor is profiteering.

        You avoid mention of that.

        You probably had to look up the definition of ‘profligate’ too.

        l o l

      2. Cowboy says:

        I don’t look up non-existent “words”.

        The Pentagon buys from private companies. Yes, private companies usually make a profit, or they can’t remain in business,

        There is always waste in the Pentagon.

        There is always waste in all government, including social programs.

      3. Nostromo says:

        So, you sanction some waste and the taxes which go for underwriting it.

        That is a double-standard.

      4. Cowboy says:

        I didn’t sanction anything.

        I simply said that there is waste in all government. It is you who displays a double standard by only talking about the Pentagon

      5. Nostromo says:

        As you only seem to want backwards-engineer social programs.

      6. Cowboy says:

        The social programs were just failed re-engineering themselves.

        What if everyone in Camden was here legally, stayed in school until they graduated, didn’t have children out of wedlock and stayed on a job ???

    3. jack Rogers says:

      Heres a thought…… Why dont the firefighters and police officers take a 5% cut in pay and change their retirement programs to defined contribution instead of defined benefits. The public employee unions have a nice lil racket going… They contribute to politicians who define their benefits using union dues that came from taxpayers pockets. What a sweet deal for the public employee union members.

  32. Nuff said says:

    You can’t pay cops and firefighters 100K a year plus benefits. You can’t have cops and forefighters retire in 25 years and make 85-90k a year plus lifetime health benefits and expect the staffing to remain the same. If the publ;ic employees are Soooooo dedicated to the city’s safety why didn’t they take a small pay cut to keep everyone working? Why didn’t they take a pay cut to keep their purported “brothers” on the job. Muncipal workers “me first” attitude is on parade for all to see.

  33. alec says:

    If you remove police, please allow the citizens in the surrounding communities to arm themselves. Time to repeal NJ’s archaic gun laws.

    1. Pete838 says:

      If it was legal to own guns I’d suggest buying them, but most of the Camden residents are probably convicted felons anyway. The ones that aren’t will become convicted felons when they are arrested for arming themselves against the criminals.

  34. Nostromo says:

    Lower taxes stimulate the creation of jobs.
    Trickle-down economics it’s called.

    l o l

    1. Cowboy says:

      Lots of jobs available from poor people…

      You want to continue to punish the rich and reward failure. No wonder there are cities like Camden…

      1. Nostromo says:

        The wealthy are stashing their funds offshore to avoid taxes.

      2. Cowboy says:

        The ‘wealthy’ pay most of the taxes in the US.

      3. Pete838 says:

        It’s their money. They should be able to do whatever they want with it. If taxes were reasonable people would be less likely to find ways of avoiding them.

    2. Nostromo says:

      They need to pay what they were under President Reagan.
      Just to catch up.

      1. Cowboy says:

        Catch up to what? It’s their money. Not yours.

      2. Nostromo says:

        If taxes are raised ( and rates go up, come down then go up again) it becomes the nation’s money, once again.

      3. Cowboy says:

        Absolute nonsense.

      4. SenseMaker says:

        Okay- if the taxes paid go back to Reagan or even Bush or Clinton era the Gov’t. SPENDING should go back to same levels…

    3. Nostromo says:

      Back to the tax rates under President Eisenhower. That’s how things’ll trend as the situation worsens.

      There still were wealthy folks in 1960. ;- )

      1. Cowboy says:

        Jobs and wealth go where taxes are lower.

        And it still isn’t your money.

      2. Nostromo says:

        Oh, yes it is.

      3. Cowboy says:

        That’s what the people in Camden thought

      4. Nostromo says:

        People in Camden are under no such impression.

      5. Cowboy says:

        Really? See if they expect some kind of bailout…

      6. Nostromo says:

        The need for food and shelter won’t dissipate.

        Without support there’ll be the unease which is in the news and could have been avoided if people just paid their taxes.

      7. Cowboy says:

        Sounds like a thinly veiled threat. Redistribute wealth or else.

      8. Nostromo says:

        No threat.
        All you need do is read the news. The lack of services is degrading society’s ability to respond. Thus lay-offs.

        What you fear’s the reality caused by austerity.

      9. Cowboy says:

        I fear nothing. But your statement was quite clear. Pay up or face consequences.

      10. Rand says:

        Nostromo…. If all the money that was make by the “rich people” is yours, THEN PAY YOUR DAMN TAXES, and all will be fixed!!

      11. Nostromo says:

        It’s a deal, ‘Randy’.

      12. Cowboy says:

        At the end of the Eisenhower era, in 1960, government spending was 28.74% of national GDP.

        In 2010, government spending was 43.09% of national GDP.

        You want Eisenhower years ?

    4. Obama says:

      Nostro, you sir are a brain dead liberal

      1. Nostromo says:

        This from you, a name caller?

      2. Cowboy says:

        “Liberal” sounds pretty accurate.

  35. Kevin MN says:

    The bluest of states and cities are only beginning to reap what they have sown. No city and no state are TOO BIG TO FAIL. As they rip off the public with their outrageous overspending and overtaxing, businesses and taxpayers have fled. They will be left with NO JOBS, NO INCOME to tax, and only the most dependent members of our society, taught to worship at the altar of the public trough. They have bought these voters and their votes for decades, by playing Robin Hood. But who is Robin going to steal from when there are no more wealthy victims left?

    Liberalism is not only a mental disorder. It is a threat to our national security.

    1. Nostromo says:

      Lower taxes for the wealthy will fix that right up.
      The same upper-crust which uses the infrastructure for its enterprises yet despises paying for it.

      1. Cowboy says:

        The so-called ‘upper crust’ are the people who actually pay taxes for infrastructure. Nearly half the people in the US don’t even pay any income tax. Some get taxpayer money instead of paying taxes themselves.

      2. Nostromo says:

        They just received a tax cut paid for by loans from China.

      3. Cowboy says:

        Nonsense. They just kept more of their own money.

      4. jschmidt says:

        lowering taxes for businesses creates job. Canada is on its 3rd round of lower corporate taxes to lure US busunesses. Taxes just take money out of growth. Government is not the means for more employment it should facilitate. Other wise you can live in Europe where the workers are entitled and businesses who pay taxes stagnate.

      5. Nostromo says:

        What’s the GDP of Canada?
        Nothing as we had here.

      6. Cowboy says:

        Canada’s GDP per person is increasing faster than the US.

      7. jschmidt says:

        Nostromo-the point is that some states and Canada are lowering taxes to steal business from other states. Then NJ loses the tax income. Get it.

      8. Nostromo says:

        They’re not stealing from NJ. Canada’s no threat to out-compete NJ.

      9. Cowboy says:

        The point is that business and jobs go where costs are lower, Taxes are a cost to business.

    2. Nostromo says:

      Taxes are a relative concept.

      1. Cowboy says:

        Taxes are the very real government taking of people’s money.

      2. Nostromo says:

        Money, wealth, are abstract concepts.
        The pyramid requires a broad-base.

        Food and shelter are real

      3. Cowboy says:

        There is no right to food and shelter

      4. Cowboy says:

        Tell the people in Camden that money and wealth are abstract concepts.

      5. Nostromo says:

        They know this.

      6. Cowboy says:

        Then they should be satisfied with their conditions.

      7. Nostromo says:

        So long as there’s food and shelter.

      8. Cowboy says:

        There is no right to food and shelter.

    3. Blake Davis says:

      You got this right – why is it that the blue states are the ones failing? When I can pay $800 in property taxes in Florida, why would anyone stay in New Jersey and pay over $9,000 – on a $250,000 house in Morris County? Or $22,000 property taxes on a $500,000 house in Essex County? There are schools and police in Florida – how can they do it on $800 and we need $22,000, or $9,000? It’s insane, and people and jobs are leaving – good bye jobs,, hello third world status – rich and poor, no in between.

      1. Nostromo says:

        Florida’s as backward as Tobacco Road.
        Literacy’s failing, the system’s failing, everywhere.

      2. Cowboy says:

        Florida doesn’t have a Camden.

      3. Nostromo says:

        Florida is one great, big, Camden.

        Florida is the Waiting Room for Eternity.

        l o l

      4. Cowboy says:

        Actually, Florida is no such thing at all. You obviously don’t get out much.

      5. pete838 says:

        My FL taxes were $900 last year on a nice 3 bedroom house. Our sheriffs department and fire department are paid. My tax rate is 14 mils, and I have a $50K homestead exemption. Our schools are solid A or B rated, and we have ZERO state income tax.
        Not sure why NJ can’t get t right, unless it has something to do with all the unions, corruption, government, and democrats.
        Good luck with that.

      6. Nostromo says:

        Pete, does your home have wheels?

      7. Cowboy says:

        Actually, most of Florida does not.

        You really have to get out more…

      8. pete838 says:

        No, my home does not have wheels. It is in a horse farm community just outside of Ocala. There are no trailers. My home is a 3 BR, remodeled completely last year, on 1.9 acres on a paved street. I have central heat and air, and even indoor toilets!

  36. Nostromo says:

    They use the infrastructure; supported by everyone.
    Yet, they do not like to support it.

    1. Cowboy says:

      Supported by everyone?

      The ‘wealthy’ are the only people paying taxes in the US.

      Who is already living off whom?

  37. Nostromo says:

    More tax cuts for the wealthy’ll fix that right up.
    Then we can send the unemployed children of the poor to babysit wealthy people’s oil overseas.

    1. Cowboy says:

      It isn’t your money

    2. H. Johnson says:

      The “wealthy” you speak of actually pay income taxes, as opposed to more than 40% of all other citizens that pay none. They worked and invested wisely and you have no claim on their money and no right to place blame for your situation on anyone but yourself. You live in a cesspool of a city with a corrupt government that you elected. Probably because they said they’d give you something for nothing. Those people you elected are the same folks that allowed unions to infiltrate you public services. Get a job. Learn to protect yourself. Learn that nobody owes you anything.

  38. JoeGoat says:

    Why dont they have VOLUNTEER Police? Because that would be too easy!
    You cant extract money from for the UNIONS that way.

    1. Cowboy says:

      The Guardian Angels are volunteering.

      Camden has to import VOLUNTEERS

  39. Max Headstrong says:

    Govt Unions are killing this countries economy…

    1. Nostromo says:

      The military budget, the Military Industrial Complex has hamstrung the country.

      That’s a big government union in and of itself.

      1. Cowboy says:

        The military is in the Constitution.

        Liberal theft is not.

      2. Nostromo says:

        Our military budget is bloated.

      3. Cowboy says:

        Our welfare systems and redistribution are bloated.

      4. bkal says:

        Why are you even responiding to Nostormo he is obviously clueless about economics.

      5. Cowboy says:

        True, but I have a little time on my hands

    2. Nostromo says:

      At least the military budget is high profile.

      You can write about the giveaways to China that’ve cost jobs.

    3. Cowboy says:

      The military is in the Constitution. Welfare and redistribution of wealth are not.

  40. jerry says:

    More cops doesn’t = less crime. If it did…then, more firefighters would = less fires. Duh. Get the people in church & reading their BIBLES.Then they’ll know right from wrong. The US constitution is only meant for a Christian nation. All else is bunk !

  41. JOE says:

    Police layoffs are a fear tactic to get people to agree to higher taxes. Hey, what about the other 6000 government departments? They go after police, firefighters and schools EVERY time. Learn about where your money goes and do something about it. Your “LEADERS” are corrupt as they come.

    1. J.C. Gorman says:

      It gets headlines every time. Scare tactic anyone. Dismiss the useless paper pushers that infest all government agencies. But NO go for the headlines.

    2. AJsDaddie says:

      Yep – notice that one fourth of government workers are laid off, but 1/3 of the firefighters and half the cops. Why isn’t it the other way around? Which departments are more important that police and fire?

      1. pete838 says:

        Excellent point, and one I noticed as well. They should get rid of parks dept., cut back on street sweeping and beautification, consolidate schools, get rid of half of city hall, and a lot of others before they cut the PD in half. Just a scare tactic. People get the government they deserve.

  42. borntobePolitical says:

    Federal, state and county representation
    Camden is in the 1st Congressional district: Rob Andrews (D, Haddon Heights). United States Senate: Frank Lautenberg (D, Cliffside Park)
    Menendez (D, Hoboken).

    5th district, New Jersey Legislature:
    New Jersey Senate:Donald Norcross (D, Camden)
    New Jersey General Assembly: Angel Fuentes (D, Camden)
    Gilbert “Whip” Wilson (D, Camden).[25]
    Mayor of Camden
    2009 to present.: Dana Redd D
    1974-77 Milton Milan D: was jailed for his connections to organized crime. On June 15, 2001, he was sentenced to serve seven years in prison on 14 counts of corruption, including accepting mob payoffs and concealing a $65,000 loan from a drug kingpin.

    Three Camden mayors have been jailed for corruption, the most recent being Milton Milan in 2000.[8] Since 2005 the school system and police department have been operated by the State of New Jersey; the takeover will expire in 2012. In 2009, Camden had the highest crime rate in the U.S. with 2,333 violent crimes per 100,000 people while the national average was 455 per 100,000 [9] Camden public schools spend $17,000 per student per year and two thirds of the students graduate. Two out of every five residents are below the national poverty line.

    What is the common thread through out this scenario? Clue, They are all Democrats.

    Nuff said

    1. Blake Davis says:

      I’ve heard it said that New Jersey taxpayers are masochists – they pay and pay and pay – and get nothing back but more obligations to pay. How did we ever survive with no income tax and no sales tax, no lottery and no casinos? Answer: we did a much better on much less money. The problem here is that no matter who we vote in nothing changes. We have a Supreme Court out of control – obligating things like ‘affordable housing’, an insane distribution scheme for education dollars, an insane scheme for public pensions, out of control spending, an impossible development criteria -in short everything is geared to being hostile to business – and business is leaving. We survive because we are marginally better than New York, but New York’s best days are over, and we don’t get the back operations any more because they can easily go elsewhere,

      No middle class left – it’s rich and poor – and government workers.

  43. Overseer says:

    Classic divide and concore. You rep/dems, union/nonunion,cons/lib fight each other over problems created by ‘your’ government. Mean while you get a little further in the hole every day. ‘government’ creates the problem and when bad enough will offer a solution. However, the solution will entail a loss of the few liberties you have left. Free your mind. good luck to all

    1. Wow... says:

      Tin Foil Hat Alert! One only needs to view the comments left by the police hating, anti-government moon bats on to know this user should be ignored.

      1. Government Stooge says:

        All hail government! I worship thee O government! Thou art my god and my salvation. I render unto government gladful taxes and my brain which I have not use for myself.

        O government! Save me from myself and the evil racist teabaggers. Whither thou goest minorities and poverty follow.

        O government, thee do I love above all else!

      2. man from mass says:

        you do know a moonbat is a liberal right?

  44. Former City Employee And Life Long Resident says:

    The level of ignorance on this post is disappointing but not surprising. Police and fire comprise 85% of the City’s budget and both departments have been protected sacred cows in the previous rounds of layoffs. Both departments also were saved from the 20% pay reduction due to furloughs that the non-uniformed employees bore the burden of. The non-uniformed employees have taken all the hits and the most recent hit, the furlough, is being followed by another layoff round. Finally police and fire is being introduced tot he harsh reality of the City’s budget deficit. If they had made concessions neither this round of layoffs nor the furlough which didn’t affect them would have been necessary. They have been greedy and gluttonous and preferred to keep their overtime salaries which in many cases equal or better their base pay. Since they have been inflexible and unwilling to budge these are the breaks. Unfortunately aside from the City’s non-uniformed employees who comprise only 15% of the City’s budget and who have taken all of the hits alone thus far, the main ones to suffer for the police and fire departments’ greed and gluttony are the Camden residents (of which I am also a member).

    1. Dave W says:

      And you my friend will suffer the consequences. What will you do when you call 911 and no one is available? Emergencies don’t wait like a pothole in the road.

      1. Johnny G says:

        Too many 911 calls are non emergence in nature. Seems many poor believe 911 is there to cater to their lack of how to live an independent life. Calls to 911 for no heat, stopped toilets, stuck doors and on and on. Can’t use 911 calls to justify a large police force. What did people do before 911 — they called local pct. Maybe they can’t remember more then 3 numbers. The most abused system in the country. NYCs 311 system relieved the 911 system of much useless traffic.

    2. H. Johnson says:

      When seconds count…the police will be there in an hour or so. Take responsibility for your own safety.

    3. Pete838 says:

      Great post, Former City Employee. The unions just got half of their members unemployed. Other states still need fire and police. Maybe they should consider relocating.

  45. NV912er says:

    @The Angry Peasant – The topic is Police and protection. Not every issue relates to guns, but this one certainly does. I’m sorry for your loss, for I am sure you have an emotional tie to all things anti gun. Your handle does say volumes about your state of mind.

    The cold, hard, facts are that Unions all across this country have bargained themselves right out of thousands of jobs and bear some responsibility for the huge unemployment.

  46. christo930 says:

    If there was no war on drugs, this wouldn’t be needed. Most of the cops in Camden are arresting street level, small time drug dealers and drug addicts. If drugs were legal, or at least decriminalized, Camden would be a much better place to live.

    1. Uncle Ho says:

      If adapted it would cure a lot of problems in New Jersey.
      Do dealers have any respect for the residents of Camden?
      Indonesia carries a maximum penalty of death for drug dealing, and a maximum of 15 years prison for drug use.

      In 2004, Australian citizen Schappelle Corby was convicted of smuggling 4.4 kilograms of cannabis in to Bali, a crime that carried a maximum penalty of death. Her trial reached the verdict of guilty with a punishment of 20 years imprisonment. Corby claimed to be an unwitting drug mule.

      Australian citizens known as the “Bali Nine” were caught smuggling heroin, and each face the death penalty.

      In August 2005, Australian model Michelle Leslie was arrested with two Ecstasy pills. She pleaded guilty to possession and in November 2005 was sentenced to 3 months imprisonment, which she was deemed to have already served, and was released from prison immediately upon her admission of guilt on the charge of possession.

  47. Tornadoboy says:

    Who is John Galt?

    If you don’t know the meaning of that question, find it out and you’ll know why everything’s about to come crashing down.

  48. Anne Frankenstein says:

    Have fun living in Camden, I would invest in a bullet proof vest and please buy some Tastykakes!!!

  49. Lucille says:


  50. Bill Walsh says:

    Dear Angry Peasant, Stephen is right about New Jersey’s unjust and absurd gun laws but the pertinent issue is unsupportable economiics attending left-wing politics, and societal breakdown that flows from progressive philosophy. We left New Jersey forty-five years ago, and while we miss family, friends, and the Jersey shore, we could never move back. The New Jersey we left is gone. ~Bill of NH

  51. tommie boy says:

    If the union would take reduced pay and benefits, not a single person would have been laid off. Place the blame on the unions.

  52. Stephen says:

    Bring it on cry baby Peasant

  53. cswareii says:

    I think it’s funny when you blame Christie for what is a CITY decision. Not only that, but the shortfall of money in this state was an issue long before Christie took office. If you have an issue with the economy and jobs, look at the legislation in place. The biggest issue right now in the states that are hurting the most are the social programs. Either some form of welfare or state sponsered retirement benifits. When you promise money to one person, you must take it from someone else. It is sad however that the first people to lose their jobs are always the people the actually protect and help the public.

    1. jschmidt says:

      we can carry the line of it’s Chrsties fault all the way to Obama. Of course he’ll just blame Bush. The 2 trillion dollar deficits of the states are the next bailout for the Dems to propose.

  54. jschmidt says:

    they finally have an adult in the governors office who seems to understand that taxes are used to pay for services and that NJ has had enough of taxes. The drunken sailors of the Democrat party have done enough damage to the state.

  55. Nobody says:

    Call it what it is – EXTORTION
    How many zoning & public affairs people are being laid off?

  56. tallulaillinois says:

    Has anyone ever thought of laying off administrative workers instead of police officers and fire fighters?

    1. MFinSC says:

      Of course not! If the pols did that, there would be no “news”. So, you lay off the most important, or at least threaten to do so; the public becomes outraged and then Obama sends money from his stash and all will be well in Camden of another year.

  57. Stephen says:

    New Jersey is increasingly becoming a hellhole simply because they have some of the strictest gun laws in the country. When guns are outlawed, only outlaws carry guns. It is incredible how few people actually understand this simple concept. If there are any self-respecting people left in New Jersey, my advice is simple: vote with your feet. Move to a free state.

    1. Mark Matis says:

      Rachel Madcow – is that you?

      Keep on brewin’ that fresh hot black tea!

    2. Stephen says:

      Free people have guns and slaves do not. Only free people can feed their cheldren . P

  58. emitgib says:

    Who do we need more Politicians or police officers? Lets lay off politicians instead till the economy turns around.

  59. Anne Frankenstein says:

    Why can’t we implement the National Guard? They are already paid for.

    1. Ronald Clifton says:

      Are they? Nothing is for free honey. If you are a liberal then I would suppose you think they are.

      1. Anne Frankenstein says:

        How about a FREE OPEN AIR DRUG MARKET?

    2. FLharleyPM says:

      Great comment and I agree, why not use the National Guard?

    3. cj says:

      Sure, Ann, that would be great. I’m a guardmen with a very good paying civilian job. I would LOVE to leave my family and my job, to get paid a great deal less, to work longer hours in a job I’m not trained for? Thank you, but no. First off, we are “not already paid for”, as you so eloquently phrased it. besides, it’s against the law under the Posse Comitatus Act passed on June 18, 1878, substantially limiting the powers of the federal government to use the military for law enforcement

      1. Anne Frankenstein says:

        Nice answer, I don’t want to help either. 1878 is so relevant to now isn’t it?

      2. The_Pilgrim says:

        Possee Comitatus doesn’t apply to the National Guard when mobilized by the State’s Government. It’s still a remarkably stupid idea, or perhaps I should say, a remarkably liberal idea. Same thing…

      3. Deacon Yermouth says:

        I really enjoy watching people get upset and watching your precious America fall apart.

      4. Uncle Ho says:

        cj Quit the guard son you don’t need it and besides why leave your family if the STATE that employs you call’s on you to take care of a STATE emergency.

        You did hear of the Newark riots didn’t you?

      5. JBZ says:

        well chief if your not ready to stand up to your duty then you should strongly resigning and staying in the profitable private sector…. When the call to serve comes there is no room for doubt.

  60. Johh Smith says:

    Another perfect example of long term democratic leadership bankrupting a city. Liberal policies such as banning law abiding citizens to arm themselves ensured that crime could spread unchecked. The liberals have created a city where only the criminals are happy. Camden, you got what you voted for. What you thought was a free lunch is now over. Time to pay now for all your free lunches and to start living on cup-o-noodle.

  61. jackwagon says:

    Who thought public service employee unionization was a good idea?

    1. JustAGuy says:


  62. FLharleyPM says:

    Doesn’t surprise me in the least…..deep unemployment=no jobs=nobody paying taxes=less revenue=budget deficits….pretty simple math explains why a lot of cities around the country are experiencing layoffs. However, bureacrats created the mess and there only answer is to not cut spending but rather to reach into your wallet and try to confiscate more of your money so they can keep on perpetuating the same irresponsible behavior that led up to the fiscal mess. Until people band together and refuse to pay on more dime to local and state government, you’re going to keep getting more of the same insanity.

  63. Nostromo says:

    More tax cuts for the wealthy. To enhance what’s already stashed off-shore.
    That’ll fix this situation all across America.

    It’s called trickle-down economics.
    And while we’re at it; outsource more community sustaining jobs to China, India, Korea and Pakistan to ensure we end up just like Haiti.

  64. Oldpuppymax says:

    Gee….I WONDER what makes Camden so dangerous! What makes it so different from Fargo, N.D., or Nome, Alaska??!! Sure is a mystery, isn’t it.

    1. JBZ says:

      i think I know what you are eluding to……

  65. William G Dell says:

    The old saying goes “unions are for those that don’t really want to work” Unions are only interested in the MONEY so they can further their political agenda. they are not really interested in the workers, just their money. They have crippled our economy and in the end will destroy it. If you are a union member, you should be ashamed at what the unions have done. I suppose unions members just don’t get it.

    1. whitpederson says:

      Let’s see, what have unions done…Have they crippled our economy through things like the eight hour work day, or the five day work week, or child labor laws, or the minimum wage, or ending abusive and unsafe practices, or the middle class?

      1. TXDiver says:

        How about come up with answers that have occurred in the last 20 years, and not 100 years ago!!! Unions were relevent then, and defended the worker. Now all they do is keep the ranks fat to insure maximum dues are paid. A little research on Camden officers committing firable offenses and yet retaining their jobs and seniority should drive that point home. If the union was interested in the mission of protecting the public they would have worked WITH the City.

  66. walter12 says:

    Here you have the most dangerous city in the US, and it is in New Jersey, where there is no 2nd Amendment rights, and only the criminals have guns. What a place, only a madman would live in Camden or even the entire state of New Jersey.

  67. ragu4u says:

    I live in THE most dangerous city, St. Louis, Mo., and we’re about to suffer cuts as well. The good thing is that when you’re already the MOST dangerous, you can never get worse….only better.

  68. Larry says:

    Why is it that these cities always cut police and firefighters first? Why aren’t they laying off the city administrators and bureaucrats in the santitation, water, eductation and many other departments? Why?, because this is a tried and true democrat tactic to scare the people into paying higher taxes and allow them to keep their bloated non-emergency services, city government workers.

    1. jschmidt says:

      because that;s how the unions get the attention of the press and may embarass the city enough to save the jobs of others.

    2. Dan Hansell says:

      they will also cut the most visible jobs so they can later say, “see what these cuts are doing?”. Everyone knows they could cut 1/3 of the gov’t bureaucracy, keep most if not all the cops and firefighters on the street and no one would notice a thing. They won’t do this because then the proponents of smaller gov’t would be vindicated. Can’t have that so they do it backwards, cut the most important and most visible first

  69. Pecos says:

    Sure, unions are just so wonderful. That’s why the only people still in them work in jobs that can’t be moved offshore. Hotel workers, teachers, government workers, that’s all that’s left. The unions forced all the other jobs to be done overseas.

  70. Jason Turnbough says:

    Sooooo with less cops to “defend” you what will you do? Is Camden going to revamp the laws to facilitate honest people carrying weapons to defend themselves? Let’s face less cops, no rightnto defend yourself more victims ofnviolent crime. Look you can come tomthe south, but leave your stupid unions up North they are a dinosaur destroying our country, and be ready to act like a man and defend yourself if necessary.

    1. rescueguy12 says:

      I agree with defending one self tho I’m sure you benif from union work and union pay .so please don’t knock the unions .

  71. Mark Matis says:

    How many of them ever actually bothered to honor their oath of office anyway? You know – the one that includes “…preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution…”? Or was that a mere formality to be ignored as soon as they pinned on the badge and strapped on their gun? A 50% cut seems like a good start.

    The stench is overwhelming. And it smells like pig.

    1. Pastor-Chris Kimmenez says:

      The most dangerous city in the country just laid off half the police force. Is that insane or is it just me

  72. Jerry says:

    Let’s get to the chase! IF (and it’s a large IF) the police and firefighters would have accepted some sort of pay reduction on all, then the layoffs would have been nil. But, oh no, Joe Blow is a selfish wage earner who obviously only cares for his/her own butt. And, there’s the story. Forget shared sacrifice. Not in the cards. Shame on ’em.

  73. satch says:

    Think about this,—–the cities in the most problems like this have been ruled by Democrats,usually for decades,ie,Chicago,Detroit,Camden,etc.

    1. Danbury says:

      Could there possibly, just possibly, be a racial component?

      1. Mark Matis says:

        NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!

        You CAN’T say that! Heck, you can’t even talk about the demographics! If you DO, that automatically makes you a beegot!

        One wonders just how many Affirmative Action police will be removed by this action? Or will they instead get rid of those few who actually DARE to honor their oath of office?

  74. joe dirt says:

    unions are why we have 8 hour work days, 40 hour work weeks and and not have to work as slaves. Just ask yourselves why the US supreme court ruled about a year ago that corporations are people?? Instead of lay offs, they should be cutting pay to all paid employees and managers too keep the cops.

    1. jflan says:

      Don’t judge unions by what they have done recently…. Judge us by those great things we did 50 years ago…. Get real.

    2. HasBeen says:

      Henry Ford gave us the 40 hour week without any union pressure. And what unions accomplished 100 years ago is far from where they are now. They have forced private American jobs overseas and have bankrupted governments at all levels, city, state and federal. Will these governments make cuts like Camden and survive, or will we drop to a 3rd world nation? I fear the latter.

  75. Dan says:

    unions aren’t the problem here folks. It’s blatant, rampant financial corruption at the federal and state level. Stop the infighting and recognize the true enemies for who they are– the bankers.

    1. jflan says:

      Spoken like a true public employee. They have all the power but none of the resposibility. I got news for you, NJ was on an unsustainable path long before the finacial crisis.

    2. Mark Matis says:

      Y’all keep on brewin’ that fresh hot black tea now!

  76. John says:

    The words “huge pension reductions” were conspicuously absent from that newstory.

    When, America, when we will stop the vampires from bleeding us dry? When will we stop the union parasites from killing the taxpayer host?

  77. pynaetlb says:

    With liberals in charge, can anyone honestly say they expected more?

  78. Jackie says:

    “Up to one-fourth of the city government’s workforce is expected to lose their jobs. About half the police force and one-third the firefighters were expected to lose their positions.”

    In doing the quick math, seems non-essential workers are not being impacted. Whatever they do, Camden should not layofft that big fat city worker with the purse in the botttom drawer with a gold clasp on a cigarette break. Oh no, then all hell would break loose.

  79. McMal1bu says:

    Yep, sounds right, get rid of the police and firemen instead of the idiots that caused it.

  80. meester says:

    All hail progress.
    The sooner the city gets ruined the sooner we can bulldoze it and put a park or airport for Philadelphia.

    1. TESL says:

      this would be almost funny if Philadelphia didn’t already have a huge INT Airport and many parks. No regard for the citizens of Camden? What if half the police force in your hometown was cut? I am guessing that your reaction would not be the same.

  81. gitzie says:

    Hey Camden, how’s that sanctuary city concept working out for you all????? I am sure those illegals will pay all your taxes, and save you.

  82. CAPS says:

    WOW, who really thinks things are getting better? It’s going to get even worse ! Think people ! One of the most crime ridden cities in America is laying off cops ?????????

  83. Shootist says:

    To Jack America – We don’t want ’em.

  84. icetrout says:

    We don’t need no stinkin badges :O

  85. Cactus Jack says:

    Stay north. We don’t need your outdated union ideas down here. Fix your own hen house. Don’t come down here and try to fix ours.

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