When they were running for re-election, Governor Dannel Malloy and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman were all smiles as they accepted the political endorsements from Connecticut’s state employee unions and the Connecticut AFL-CIO.
When Malloy and Wyman wanted the unions to fork over money to help pay for their re-election campaign, union leaders stepped up big time.
Using hard-earned money collected from their members, AFSCME dumped $1.2 million into the Super PAC that was set up to support Malloy and Wyman’s effort to spend four more years in office. The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) added $600,000 and SEIU donated $550,000 to the same political committee.
In addition, when Malloy and Wyman wanted campaign donations funneled into a special account run by the Democratic State Central Committee, the various unions came up with over $160,000.
And not a complaint was heard when unions’ political operation kicked into high gear, providing the votes that Malloy and Wyman needed to get the second term in office that they so desperately wanted.
Even after the 2014 election, Team Malloy/Wyman kept their proverbial hand out, looking to the unions to cough up even more of their members’ money. According to the latest campaign finance reports, the state employee unions have donated in excess of $42,000 to the Malloy/Wyman political operation in 2015.
However, as Connecticut’s public employees are learning, yet again, the Malloy administration is fond of turning on state employees with a vengeance.
While refusing to demand that Connecticut’s wealthiest residents pay their fair share, Dannel Malloy’s new state budget plan cuts vital programs, lays off state employees and seeks to privatize public government functions. The budget proposal is more in line with something that would be coming from the likes of right-wing Republican Governor Scott Walker. (See also – Malloy Administration ushering in a “Wisconsin Moment” at UConn and CSU Wait, What? 11/6/2015)
In addition to proposing a state budget balanced through state employee layoffs, concessions and major budget cuts, each news cycle reveals additional attacks by the Malloy administration on state employees and the services they provide.
As CT Newsjunkie is reporting in an article entitled, Malloy Proposes Bill To Outsource Some DMV Services, in an incredible and deceitful move, Malloy is expanding his effort to shift the blame for the massive problems associated with the Department of Motor Vehicles’ recent computer upgrade onto the backs of the state employees who work at DMV.
Although it was the Malloy administration that contracted with the out-of-sate, for-profit company to revamp DMV’s computers, a move that has led to longer wait times and a variety of problems, Malloy is now proposing to privatize even more of the DMV’s activities.
As CT Newsjunkie reports;
AFT Connecticut First Vice President Jean Morningstar said the outsourcing of the information technology was just the most recent in a “long line of outsourcing failures that could and should have been avoided.”
However, “the administration appears ready to double-down on another risky contracting scheme. If it fails — like so many previous privatization bungles — state residents will be left with the tab and suffering from degraded services,” Morningstar said.
Morningstar serves on the State Contracting Standards Board, which has been unable to meet to go over contracts because the governor has yet to fill the vacancies on the board and it doesn’t have a quorum.
This week Malloy and Wyman will begin a new round of their – my way or no way — budget tours, and while the spin will be coming fast and furious, their fundamental approach to the Connecticut state budget will be clear for all to see. Target the most vulnerable for budget cuts, expand funding for charter schools, shift costs to local property taxpayers, college students and others … and most importantly … blame state employees.
Malloy’s approach has certainly changed considerably since he took the stage at the AFL-CIO convention in June 2014 where he proclaimed;
“A Connecticut moment is when you stand up for your fellow citizens,” Malloy told about 450 union leaders and supporters gathered in the unionized Omni Hotel. “When you understand that they too have rights; that we can move forward together, and in fact when we don’t move forward together, we move backward.”
If this all sounds a bit familiar…
Union Members Not Interested in ‘Wisconsin Moment’ (AFSCME + AFT IN CT Newsjunkie)
No Wisconsin Moment in CT (AFSCME)
NOTE: For those who want to be lectured to, the Malloy/Wyman style of leadership will be on full display at their first Town Hall Budget Forum February 11, 2016.
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman today announced that they will hold a town hall forum in Stamford on the evening of Thursday, February 11, 2016, to discuss his budget principles, his proposals for adapting state government to a changing economy, and other issues concerning the future of the state.
The forum will be held from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the UConn Stamford Campus in the Gen Re Auditorium (1 University Place, Stamford). Residents who would like an opportunity to ask the Governor a question should arrive about 30 minutes prior to the start of the event to submit their name on a sign-up sheet. The forum is open to the public.
The Stamford event will be the first stop in a series of town hall forums that the Governor and Lt. Governor will be holding throughout the 2016 legislative session. The event will be similar to those they have held in previous years, where they answered hundreds of questions on a range of state issues at numerous forums.
Dates and locations for additional town hall forums in the series will be announced during the coming weeks.