Friday, January 09, 2009

Actions vs. words

Democratic legislative leaders have taken exception when I have suggested they lack the willingness to make the difficult decisions to address the state budget crisis....but I find their actions to bemore telling then their words. Take for example the latest issue revolving around a new contract for Department of Corrections Officers.

An arbitrator awarded the union a contract based on the state's last best offer, however, Gov. Joid Rell is now calling on the legislature to reject the contract, claiming the state can't afford the $86 million in payraises.The state's offer was made last May, well before anyone knew of the real impact of the economic meltdown.

The Democratic response to the governor's call was...expected. Senate President Pro Tem. Don Williams, D-Brooklyn, dismissed the idea of rejecting the contract because it might hamper the state's ability to win union concessions later. Newly elected House Speaker Chris Donovan, a union activists by trade, said it wasn't the unions who caused our financial problems -- kind suggesting that they shouldn't have to be penalized because of it

Yet...these same two legislative leaders are also "heard" echoing the governor's mantra that there are no sacred cows during this year's budget deliberations, and everything is on the table in terms of spending cuts.

The legislature can vote to accept the union contract -- or do nothing and just let it take effect by default in 30 days. It would take a two-thirds vote in either chamber to reject the contract. I don't see a vote being called for because that would result in lawmakers actually having to go on record of doing something . Doing nothing seems to be the easy path.

Just an idea....but how about rejecting the contract and suggesting to the union that the pay freeze they'll get will be counted as the union concession later. That is, of course, if there truly are no sacred cows.

2 Comments:

Blogger dweeb said...

Sometimes the things our leaders DO speak so loudly I cannot hear what they SAY.

Thanks for bearing witness to the glib insincerity and political posturing for effect--as if what we need right now is MORE preening and pouting, on either side of the aisle.

1:45 PM  
Blogger mlnmatt said...

What do you think arbitration is for?

If you want to allow unions to reject an arbitration-produced contract, then fine. But it shouldn't be a 1-way street.

6:17 PM  

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