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New law requires direct deposit for state workers

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Gov. Chris Christie signed a cost-cutting bill Thursday that will save the state hundreds of thousands of dollars by eliminating state employees’ paychecks.

That is, the state will eliminate paper paychecks. In lieu of physical checks, all state employees will have to switch to direct deposit payments by July 1, 2014.

The move is expected to save the state more than half a million dollars annually by Fiscal Year 2015.

The bill was passed by the state Senate in December, and by the Assembly in January. Christie signed it Thursday.

“In the long-run, this initiative will save a considerable amount in taxpayer dollars,” said Sen. Bob Gordon (D-Fair Lawn), in a press release. “The fact is every penny government can save is a penny that can be either reinvested in vital programs or returned to taxpayers.”

State employees already have the option of receiving direct deposit, but some still prefer paper checks. The law also contains a provision allowing counties, county colleges, municipalities and school districts to pass their own ordinances requiring direct deposit.

Assemblyman Ruben Ramos Jr. (D-Hoboken) said the change was long overdue.

“It’s the 21st century and it’s time the state of New Jersey began acting like it,” Ramos said. “There’s no excuse as to why the state insists on physically mailing pay stubs that are sealed in an envelope, printed on paper, stamped and labeled. This is a recurring administrative cost that the state incurs for thousands of employees.”

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