Call for Traffic

Inspection Schedule

High Risk? Off Shore

Retirement for CEOs

Juggling Job & Kids

Free SBDC Seminars

Donate Please

Corrections or additions?

This was published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on November 11, 1998.

All rights reserved.

The New Unions

Employers need to fulfill their obligations to their

employees, says Charles C. Heckscher, professor and chair of

the Rutgers Department of Labor Studies and Employment Relations.

These obligations include developing the skills of their employees,

providing information, and developing the existing workforce to meet

the company’s requirements. If they don’t take care of these basic

needs, they will have a bunch of frightened employees wondering when

they are going to be laid off.

Heckscher speaks on the "The Changing Employer-Employee

Relationship,"

part of the "Corporate Ethics and Workers’ Rights in a Changing

World" series hosted by Unitarian Universalists for a Just

Economic

Community (UUJEC). The free seminar will be held on Tuesday, November

17, at 7 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, Route 206 and Cherry Hill Road.

Call Carol Allen at 609-921-2987 to register.

Heckscher received his Ph.D from Harvard University in 1981 and was

formerly on the research staff of Communication Workers of America

and taught human resources management at the Harvard Business School.

His writings on workplace topics include "The New Unionism,"

"Post-Bureaucratic Organization," and "White Collar

Blues"

(908-932-1412).

"In an age of corporate restructuring employees are under

tremendous

pressure because of lack of job security," says Heckscher. In

a very mobile labor market, with market and technology changing

constantly,

there is a strong movement for new labor policies.

White collar workers without unions, says Heckscher, need some kind

of collective representation, some association or body to voice their

needs and concerns. And in the existing unions, there should be

substantial

change. There should be a combination of employee rights with

flexibility

and responsiveness.

This sort of reform is supposedly taking place now. "There is

a lot of interest in employee involvement but in this era of

heightened

concern about profitability, when push comes to shove, employee

involvement

programs are quick to go out the window." says Judy Morgan,

a member of UUJEC, which aims to work for economic justice by

addressing

such issues as income inequality, universal health care, workers

rights,

and corporate responsibility.

Heckscher’s latest book, "White Collar Blues," deals with

management loyalties in an age of corporate restructuring. He did

a series of interviews with middle managers in companies that have

been doing a lot of downsizing. Heckscher imagined there would be

a lot of discontent, and simmering revolt in the ranks but was

surprised

to realize that they accepted the situation, and that their loyalty

to the organization had not altered even though the company had not

kept its part of the bargain.

This kind of narrow loyalty, Heckscher suggests, made the company

less effective. These employees may have worked harder, so they would

not be fired, but that did not mean they worked better. Heckscher

believes that companies can certainly do much better with a group

of proactive workers rather than reactive ones.

Top Of Page
Call for Traffic

Headed for the Philadelphia airport and worried about

traffic conditions? Call SmarTraveler, a phone service with

minute-by-minute

updates on traffic tieups in South Jersey and Philadelphia.

It’s one of a half-dozen exhibits scheduled for the Greater Mercer

Transportation Management Association’s "Road Show Technology

Expo" on Friday, November 13, from 11 a.m. to noon at the Hyatt.

At noon there will be a luncheon and membership meeting for which

invitations are required, but anyone can come to browse the expo.

Call 609-452-1491 for reservations.

David Rosenberg of Smart Route Systems will give out wallet

cards telling how to use SmarTraveler, which lets you telephone for

minute by minute updates on specific roads on weekdays from 5:30 a.m.

to 7:30 p.m. Event and construction information is available 24 hours

a day. The information is gathered from aircraft surveillance, from

more than 35 closed circuit cameras, radio and cellular mobile units,

and direct connections to police, fire, and emergency services. When

the "smart road" installation is complete in Central New

Jersey,

SmarTraveler may also be available here. The service is free, funded

by Pennsylvania DOT.

To use Smart Traveler call 215-567-5678 (or #211 on a cellular phone,

which is free for ComCast and Sprint PCS customers). For traffic

conditions

around the Philadelphia International Airport, for instance, ask for

7451*. For information on I-95 north of the airport, ask for 952*.

Or consult the website: (http: www.smartraveler.com).

Also on display at the expo will be the smart road technology that

is supposed to ease traffic on Route 1, miniature machines that work

on alternative fuels, New Jersey Transit schedules and information

on the new Hamilton Train station, and WorkFirst NJ, an online

jobposting

and job finding service. Kathy Wierzbicki of the state labor

department will demonstrate WNJPIN’s website.

The TMA has the "Incident Management" contract for Mercer

County, and it is mapping out the overall plan for the county’s

response

to traffic-stopping situations. Jeanne Shreve of the TMA, along

with Sergeant Dan Morocco and Sergeant Bill McDonnell

of the New Jersey State Police, will demonstrate it.

The state’s outdated ridesharing matching system, Pool Match, is being

replaced by RidePro, to be demonstrated by Steve Fittante of

Intelitron. "PoolMatch was good for its time," says Joan

Lockwood-Reck of TMA, "but it was on a Unix system, and you

had to work with print copies of match forms. Also you had to work

with zip codes, not map coordinates, because it couldn’t do

mapping."

At the lunch Assemblyman Reed Gusciora will present a resolution

honoring GMTMA for its innovative Freewheels program. Assemblyman

Alex DeCroce will get the Government Leadership award for work

on the house transportation committee. Awards will be presented for

ozone action, advanced technology, employee transportation

coordination,

and municipal outreach.

Top Of Page
Inspection Schedule

Call a new toll-free number 888-NJ-MOTOR (888-656-6867)

for information about New Jersey’s new enhanced motor vehicle

inspection

program. This will be available to motorists during the state

inspection

facilities’ new business hours for questions specific to the new

enhanced

inspection program. Questions related to subjects other than the new

enhanced inspection program, such as licensing, registration, titles,

etc., should still be directed to the current toll-free number

maintained

by New Jersey Motor Vehicles Services (888-486-3339).

Parsons Infrastructure and Technology Group was awarded a contract

in July to convert the inspection stations to perform the new enhanced

emissions test. The conversion of inspection facilities is currently

underway and will be completed by December, 1999.

Hours of operation for all 35 Motor Vehicle Services stations have

been expanded by an additional 10 hours per week. Inspection stations

will be open from 7.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. on weekdays, except for the

late night at each station, and from 7.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. on

Saturdays.

On the designated day of late night operation (Wednesdays for Baker’s

Basin), the inspection station will open at 7.30 a.m. and stay open

until 7.30 p.m.

Top Of Page
High Risk? Off Shore

Three CPAs from J.H. Cohn LLP will tell about the tax

planning moves in a forum entitled "Estate, Financial & Tax

Planning

— Life, Death & Beyond" on Thursday, November 12, at 7:45

a.m. at Greenacres Country Club.

"This will not be your basic estate planning seminar,"

promises

Andrew T. Wolfe, who went to Muhlenberg, Class of 1981, and

has law degrees from Seton Hall and New York University. He will be

joined by Allan J. Turoff a Temple alumnus, Class of 1965, and

a certified financial planner; and Michael S. Goodman, an

alumnus

of Washington University, Class of 1968, who went to law school there

before getting his master’s in taxation from NYU.

On the agenda are the obvious considerations of the new Roth IRA along

with the very welcome tax problems that come with a bull market —

unexpectedly large accumulations in qualified retirement plans.

"We

will provide some creative estate planning strategies to maximize

the after-tax value of existing retirement assets and provide for

continuing tax-deferred compounding of retirement assets in to the

second generation," says Wolfe. These may include valuation

discounts;

estate tax exemptions; and the new deduction for qualified

family-owned

businesses.

When you talk about "off-shore businesses" most people tune

out, thinking they are not eligible. But Wolfe will cover this aspect

of asset protection planning: the effective use of off-shore asset

protection trusts. Such an off-shore solution, says Wolfe, is

sometimes

appropriate for individuals "who are not satisfied with the degree

of asset protection available from more traditional domestic entities,

and whose business or other activities result in a high-risk

environment."

What constitutes "high risk" is up to you.

On the other side of life’s balance sheet are those who risk having

insufficient amounts in their retirement accounts. "When a client

asks me, `Can I retire today?’ my answer is always yes," says

Turoff. "Whether or not they will like the lifestyle in which

they retire is dependent upon how well they have planned and how well

they have implemented."

As for the process of doing the financial planning, he concedes that

you can do it yourself. But, as he points out, "You can also take

out your own appendix, but would you want to?"

Top Of Page
Retirement for CEOs

Here’s a problem many benefits administrators must cope

with: Executives earning more than $160,000 can accrue tax-deferred

retirement benefits only up to that amount. How can their benefits

plan make up the difference?

The Web Network of Benefits Professionals will tackle that problem

on Tuesday, November 17, at 8 a.m. at Smith, Stratton, Wise, Heher

& Brennan. Bob Novak and Gary Rothy, both graduates of

Brooklyn College and senior consultants of Pricewaterhouse Coopers,

will give the program. Cost: $30. Call Stephanie Bosworth at

609-987-6672.

If you are one of those lucky enough to earn more than $160,000 this

year, take a look at the profit sharing or retirement plan that is

based on your retirement compensation. Retirement compensation is

the figure used to determine how much the company can sock away each

year for you, tax deferred. It can also be the number used to

determine

how much the company will give you as a pension, when you will be

in a different tax bracket.

Two types of plans can be used to save for an employee’s retirement

on a tax-deferred basis, qualified and non qualified plans. "In

both cases you are trying to defer tax, but the plan that is

tax-qualified

offers more protection," says Bosworth. "No matter what plan

you use, the most compensation you can plug into that calculation

is $160,000 per year. If you earn $180,000 or $360,000, the limit

is still $160,000. It’s called the $160K pension pay cap problem."

Under the present tax laws, if a company wants to restore lost

benefits

to those higher-paid executives, the company must increase the

individual’s

benefits package by dipping into general assets.

Novak and Rothy specialize in the design, funding, and regulatory

issues of defined benefit plans. "We will talk about limitations

that the Internal Revenue Service imposes on tax-qualified retirement

programs in delivering benefits to highly compensated employees,"

says Rothy. They will discuss the creative compliance measures that

can solve these problems (measures that meet with approval from the

IRS), and give practical considerations for evaluating options.

Rothy will show how benefits limitations can be made up by using

non-tax

qualified programs, and he will give the advantages and disadvantages

of these approaches.

Novak will discuss the nuts and bolts of how to design a benefits

program using a tax qualified plan. "If a company has employees

earning over $160,000, I will show them how to maximize their benefits

through the tax qualified plan," says Novak.

Financing executive retirement benefits through the tax qualified

plans is beneficial to both the executive and the company. Without

these plans, the executives become creditors. That’s how it was for

a public utility company in the Northeast. Its officers’ benefits

were under unsecured qualified arrangements, and the officers were

creditors. "In the case of a company going bankrupt, the

executives

would have to stand in line to get their retirement benefits,"

says Rothy. Recently it provided all retirement benefits under the

tax qualified plan for its five top officers.

In a scenario for companies with non-qualified plans cited by Novak,

if a company changes ownership or the executive falls out of favor,

the highly paid executive might lose his or her benefits. This

contrasts

with the tax-qualified plan, under which neither the employer nor

the employer’s creditors can do anything to take away the employee’s

benefits. The employee is not subject to the whims of the current

owners.

Top Of Page
Juggling Job & Kids

<B>Anne Pauker of the Pauker Consulting Group

certainly

knows about "managing the conflicts of work and family roles."

She is a working mother who took just one month’s maternity leave

when each of her three daughters was born. To discuss that topic she

joins psychotherapist Maggie Clune and Kimberlee S. Phelan

of Withum Smith & Brown on Monday, November 16, at 6 p.m. at the

Princeton

Business and Professional Women meeting at the Holiday Inn on Route

1 South. Cost: $28. Call 908-359-2034.

Pauker’s advice is based on her experiences, not only as a working

mother, but as vice president of employee relations for Continental

Insurance in Cranbury. "While at Continental, I introduced and

implemented a comprehensive work life strategy, for which the company

was widely recognized throughout the industry and the country as a

`best practice model’" she says.

After Continental moved out of Cranbury in 1995, she started her own

human resource strategies consulting practice. She was a consultant

to Working Mother magazine this year to develop its list of Top 100

Companies for Working Mothers. Her business is located in Hazlet

(732-888-8113,

http://www.paukergroup.com).

Top Of Page
Free SBDC Seminars

How do small businesses tackle competition? What

marketing

plans and tax strategies will most profit them? How can the Internet

be used by entrepreneurs to promote their business? These are some

of the topics that will be discussed at the seminars organized by

First Union Bank and the New Jersey Small Business Development Center

(NJSBDC) of Rutgers. This statewide seminar series runs through

December

and is part of NJSBDC’s 20th Anniversary effort to help small business

owners develop more effective "business building" skills and

opportunities.

These two and a half hour seminars are free (materials included),

but pre-registration is required. For a full schedule and to register,

please call the NJSBDC’s Information Services Center at 800-432-1565

or visit http://www.nj.com/smallbusiness.

Dan McComas, internationally acclaimed marketing and sales

success

strategist and author of "Marketing Boot Camp," gives a power

workout in his session "Marketing Yourself and Your Business."

McComas shows how to attract more customers faster and generate higher

profits without making cold sales calls or waiting for customer

referrals.

On Tuesday, November 17, at 8 a.m., McComas is scheduled for the

Somerset

Quality Inn, and he comes to the East Brunswick Ramada on Thursday,

November 19, at 8 a.m.

As CEO of 3C, the highly regarded web site and multimedia tool design

and development company, Bert Hesse knows first hand how to

make technology work. In his session "Technology for establishing

your Company’s Brand" Hesse explains how developing technologies

can establish and solidify a company’s brand. Learn what factors make

up a good web site, how to evaluate a web site, and how to use current

and future technology to increase sales and profitability. He speaks

at the Princeton Holiday Inn on Route 1 South on Wednesday, November

18, at 5 p.m.

Top Of Page
Donate Please

<B>Jill Carpe, owner of the Crafts with a Conscience

at the Salty Dog onn Spring Street in downtown Princeton, hopes

merchants

will help Princeton’s Sister City, Granada. It was wiped out by

Hurricane

Mitch and has no roads or access. "Granada had a lake with islands

occupied by families, and all the islands and people are gone,"

says Carpe. "Sister city relationships shouldn’t be just for

cultural

exchange." She will donate $5 from every Jerry Garcia tie sold

from now until June and send it directly to CARE, earmarked for

Nicaragua,

and she challenges other merchants to adopt a similar plan. "If

we work hard in this area we can make a difference."

Donations of new books and money are needed for the Books to Keep

program, an outreach project of the Libraries of Middlesex.

The librarians distribute books to disadvantaged children at daycare

centers, homeless shelters, and Head Start. Bring new hardcover and

paperback books, suitable for children from preschool through

adolescence,

to any library in Middlesex County or to Borders in East Brunswick,

preferably by December 15. For information call 732-890-6761.

Borders Books & Music of East Brunswick will offer a 20 percent

discount on merchandise in the children’s section on Thursday,

December

3, from 6 to 9 p.m. and give a percentage of sales to this program.


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