$3M for uniforms…for people who don't use uniforms

Wednesday Waste | April 20, 2011

Ever been frustrated that you couldn’t write off your work clothes as a business expense? Well, why not become a public worker in New Jersey? Then, not only will you not need to write them off, the government will pay for them.

NBC New York has more:

New Jersey spent more than $3 million this fiscal year on clothing allowances for white-collar workers who aren’t required to wear uniforms, according to a new report from the state comptroller.

New Jersey provides an annual clothing allowance for uniforms to certain employees of $700 a year for full-time workers and $350 for part-time workers.

Overall, the state spends more than $22 million a year on clothing allowances, with more than 20 percent going to white-collar workers, such as day care counselors, computer technicians and teaching assistants. About half of them don’t wear uniforms, the report said.

What if you don’t need to spend $700 dollars a year on clothes? No problem. The system doesn’t require accountability.

The allowance is a flat amount included in payroll checks and doesn’t require that employees provide a receipt.

Not surprisingly, both parties are criticizing the spending.

Sen. Tom Kean Jr., R-Westfield, called the allowances a “back-door salary increase” for some state workers.

“We’ve heard a lot of terrible instances of taxpayer money being wasted, but this may top them all,” Moriarty said, D-Turnersville. “It has to stop.”



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