New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Friday said he had chosen nine people to serve on a commission that will make recommendations to improve the state’s public pension and health benefits systems.
“It’s time to think out of the box and be prepared to abandon the sacred cows that have long been off-limits in reforming our entitlement programs to make them permanently affordable and sustainable,” Mr. Christie said in a news release. “Only by bringing together such a non-partisan group — none of whom are impeded by special interests — can we truthfully assess the problem, its roots and its potential remedies.”
Mr. Christie issued an executive order Aug. 1 creating the New Jersey Pension and Health Benefit Study Commission, saying its members would make recommendations to him within 30 days of starting their work.
The members are: Thomas J. Healey, partner in Healey Development LLC and former assistant secretary of treasury for domestic finances under President Ronald Reagan, who will coordinate the work of the commission; Brendan Thomas Byrne Jr. , managing member and founder of Byrne Asset Management and vice chairman of the New Jersey State Investment Council; Carl Hess, managing director of the Americas for Towers Watson & Co.; Ethan Kra, an independent actuarial consultant; Raymond Chambers, United Nations special envoy for financing the health millennium development goals; Leonard W. Davis, chief financial officer, SCS Commodities Corp.; Ken Kunzman, partner in Connell Foley LLP and co-counsel since 1978 of the Pension and Welfare Funds for Locals 472 and 172 Heavy and General Laborers Fund of New Jersey; Larry Sher, a partner at October Three Consulting; and Margaret Berger, consulting actuary and principal for the retirement practice at Mercer.