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For nearly a year, Gov. Christie has been trying to place a partisan pal on the state Parole Board, which is where you air-drop allies who might want a six-figure patronage job for six years. But this nominee, Ocean County Freeholder Jack Kelly, is learning...

Christie's triple-dipping pal unqualified for Parole Board | Editorial

For nearly a year, Gov. Christie has been trying to place a partisan pal on the state Parole Board, which is where you air-drop allies who might want a six-figure patronage job for six years. But this nominee, Ocean County Freeholder Jack Kelly, is learning...

Christie's triple-dipping pal unqualified for Parole Board | Editorial

For nearly a year, Gov. Christie has been trying to place a partisan pal on the state Parole Board, which is where you air-drop allies who might want a six-figure patronage job for six years.

But this nominee, Ocean County Freeholder Jack Kelly, is learning that karma is a bummer, and we hope he learns this lesson until he is done collecting salaries from three other jobs.

This isn't just about his resume, which is filled with government jobs and includes nothing related to criminal justice. It's not about his skeletons, which includes inventing an $115,000 job last year for a relative already earning a state police pension.

And one might even debate an observation from Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen), who says Kelly "lacks the judgment and moral capacity" to be given authority over the lives of others.

If he were a deserving nominee, one might overlook Kelly's faults – until you remember that he was the pitiless political hack who in 2006 tried to deny a terminally-ill cop the right to leave her police pension to her domestic partner.

They actually made two poignant films about Laurel Hester, a 25-year veteran detective in Ocean County. In both, Kelly is a figure of infamy, who stood on religious principle and fiscal responsibility - a knee-slapper, considering his warm relationship with the public till.

The Asbury Park Press expertly chronicles other posts Kelly has held, benefits he receives from early retirements, and money he's banked for opting out of health plans that he doesn't even need.

Upshot: He is a classic "triple-dipper," who has collected more than $500,000 in state pension funds alone by age 64. And now he seeks another six-figure position for which he has no qualifications that anyone can cite.

That's why members of the Senate Judiciary Committee are speaking out. Senator Raymond Lesniak (D-Union), who blocked a vote on Kelly last December, calls him "the poster boy for what's wrong with politics in New Jersey, representing a colossal waste of taxpayers dollars."

We approve of the committee standing firm on this, because Kelly is no more qualified than he was the last time he was nominated. But it might be best to reform a patronage pit, as Lesniak hopes to explore, and prevent people like Jack Kelly from collecting yet another unearned payday.

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