By Art Gallagher
Yesterday there were four real Jersey guys on the radio from 5PM-6PM for what might have been the last LaRossa and Gallagher Radio Show on WIFIAM1460.
I’m not knocking THE Jersey Guys, Casey, Rossi and Bob Ingle on Fridays, formerly of 101.5 FM. I enjoyed their show and listened to it whenever I was on the road in the afternoon. My favorite all time show was Casey screaming, “YOU’RE LOSING VOTES RIGHT NOW” at gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie during the 2009 primary campaign while Christie was trying to finesse an answer to a particularly blunt question.
I think 101.5 was nuts to cancel the show that they themselves promoted as the most successful afternoon radio show in the country. I doubt the petition to get the show back on the air will make any difference, but if you want to be part of it, you can do so here.
As good as the show was, my friend Tommy DeSeno is right. As talented as they are, Casey, Rossi and Ingle are not really Jersey guys. Casey’s from California, Rossi from Brooklyn and Ingle from Georgia. They’re not Jersey guys like the four natives who were on the radio yesterday afternoon, my partner Senator Dick LaRossa born in Trenton on July 1 (Happy Birthday Dick!), Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, Fair Haven Mayor Mike Halfacre, and yours truly.
Straight Talk On The Pension and Health Care Reforms
While our show was not nearly as funny as THE Jersey Guys, it was the most informative and honest report of the pension and benefits reform package anywhere to date, if I do say so myself.
My hat is off to Declan O’Scanlon for coming back on the show for second week in a row knowing that I was not buying the hype of the “landmark” nature of the reforms and for answering our questions frankly.
O’Scanlon is high on the impact the reforms are making compared to what would have happened if the status quo continued. However, with only a little dancing, he did acknowledge that without significant economic growth, New Jersey will be in deep doo doo as the taxpayers increase their state pension contributions by $500 million each year over the next seven years. That doesn’t include the municipal pension contributions that come from property taxes.
Botton line…there is a very real possibility that the pension reforms in particular will lead to large tax increases on the state and local levels and/or draconian spending cuts. O’Scanlon did not dispute that. He argued things would be much worse had the administration and legislature done nothing.
During the second half hour Halfacre was upbeat about 1) the fact that the deal could have been done at all given the historical nature of things in Trenton, and 2) the savings Fair Haven taxpayers will realize from the health care end of the reforms.
The highlight of the show was Halfacre’s explanation of how he and the Fair Haven Council have been able to lower property taxes three years in a row and counting: 1) Saying no, 2) Pissing people off, 3) Standing firm when the pissed off people are yelling at you, 4) Doing all of that and getting reelected.
Here’s a recording of the show:
Why was Tuesday’s show perhaps the last LaRossa and Gallagher Show? Dick and I are thinking of changing the name of the show to The Jersey Guys or The Real Jersey Guys. We’re hoping Millennium Radio will issue and cease and desist letter or maybe even sue us so we can get lots of free publicity and beat out Deminski and Doyle on Tuesday afternoons.