The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

June 22, 2009
Blog back: a launch, a lawsuit, an LAO analysis and legislation

Blog backs review your thoughtful and provocative online comments, amplify points, answer questions, correct our mistakes and humbly accept your warranted criticism.

June 9 Administration launches new waste reporting Web site

These comments represent many of the comments, calls and e-mails that we received about the new Waste Watchers site. The administration says that it has received many good suggestions, but comments on this blog reveal that some state workers harbor hard feelings toward Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger personally and generally mistrust the bureaucracy.

This is not about soliciting good ideas. It is about bashing and scapegoating state employees. He wants us to give him the ammunition to eliminate our jobs.
I agree with the other posters that this website is a Trojan Horse meant to undermine state employees. The governator and his cronies will take the information provided and use it against us. I also feel the same way about the Whistle Blowers hotline.
I have stuff I'd like to report, but I'm not going to do so through THIS could be used against me later. Give me a place to report things anonymously that isn't connected in any way, manner, shape or form with Schwarzenegger and I'll be happy to say what I need to say. Until then...not a word!
This is a site where state workers can shoot themselves in the foot. What a ploy by the Governator? Anybody posting here will just provide him more ammunition to do more layoffs and cut your pay even more.
What a publicity seeking Governor we have.
Yeah, I can see it now, I saw my co-worker take a pencil home. They will spend $50k to investigate a penny loss.
The only thing I would like to report to the Waste Watchers website is the Waste Watchers website. You are talking about laying off people who do actual work and provide needed services, while at the same time creating more fluff like this website and the positions to "monitor" it.

Click the link below to read more blog backs.

June 10 Cal Ee-Mah? Or Cal Ee-Em-Ay? Agency takes a stand

Here's how to pronounce Sacramento Bee: "Sakramento R.A.G" Do you not have anything better to do? Who pays your bills? Look up any corporation and they will have rules about the use of their logo. G.E.T.A.L.I.F.E. Leave us alone - we are trying to earn our paycheck and pay our mortgage like everyone else out there.

We'll step aside and let another commenter respond to the criticism:

...the point of the piece is we have a 24.5 Billion dollar deficit and this Agency is caught up in it's new "branding"...this will not save jobs, reduce the deficit and it will wind up costing the Taxpayers because all the logos have to be changed from OES/OHS to Cal EMA...similar to the re-branding of CDF to Cal Fire...all new logos on vehicles, uniforms, letter heads signage etc... now is not the time for this...but then this was touted as one of the Governor's ways of "streamlining" State Government and saving the Taxpayer's money...

June 10 Schwarzenegger appeals State Fund ruling

Schwarzenegger isn't trying to balance the budget. He is retaliating for not getting his way in the election. Bully behavior is not the same thing as leadership.

The governor's office has consistently said that Schwarzenegger's cost-cutting policies are driven by a relentless search for savings. It's nothing personal, the administration has told us. Many blog users and many folks who call or e-mail The State Worker see it differently.

What's this going to cost me as a tax payer? No wonder I have to receive pay cuts, because this guy has nothing better to do than tie up the court system with needless appeals. As the court battles continue, start looking for more reductions in pay, all these bills have to be paid from somewhere, and by someone, and I bet you all, the GAS is not footing the bill out of his own pocket.

Through mid-April (right after a judge found in favor of CASE in the State Fund lawsuit), bills from contract attorneys to fight furlough lawsuits on behalf of the governor totaled about $180,000, according to the Department of Personnel Administration. You can read our post about it by clicking here.

Where is SEIU? They are not fighting for State Fund, they are actually trying to rebut the order! This order was only applied to State Fund Legal staff, not all of State Fund, because SEIU wasn't there to join the suit.

Local 1000 last week filed a furlough exemption lawsuit for the 5,000 or so State Fund employees that it covers. Click here for more info about it.

June 11 Job fair today at Cal Expo

Nice to offer this expo....BUT, what about non-Sacramento based employees? Is the State offering job fairs to those individuals, too?

We couldn't find anything on DPA's Web site similar events in other parts of the state.

By the way, more than 1,200 state workers attended the job fair on June 11, DPA told us, and 43 departments were on hand. Some made on-the-spot job offers. Others made appointments for subsequent interviews.

June 12 LAO: McCauley pension tax proposition may be illegal

McCauley is a whack job. He proposes these ballot measures so he can see his name in the news. The state should bill him as a habitual offender for writing stupid ballot measures.

We have struggled with whether to give Paul McCauley the spotlight of this blog. We decided that since the government has given approval for him to gather signatures to qualify his measures for a statewide vote, that we would be remiss to ignore his efforts.

McCauley has yet to qualify any of self-named his initiatives for the ballot.

June 12 Schwarzenegger: State employee health care on the table?

I said it in a letter today to the Legislators and I'll say it here -- the same funding streams are used for state and local governments. So, why should state employees take all of the cuts, while their "partner" agencies s at the counties, cities, school districts, take minimal or no cuts. The $2 billion in funding can legitimately pay for state employees, as well as for county and city employees. Since the state and local government are partners, then the pain should be shared equally.

Public employees at all levels of government are being squeezed. We wrote about the trend in this June 7 story.

June 19 Senate budget analysis 'assumes' SEIU contract won't be ratified

... speaking of lawsuits, does anybody know when the appeal will be heard on Marlette's decision (and bid for a seat on the State Appellate Court) that "granted" the governor the extra-constitutional power to furlough? Once that is overturned, all of GAS's leverage disappears.

The appeal of Judge Patrick Marlette's Jan. 29 ruling hasn't been scheduled for a hearing in the 3rd Disrict Court yet. You can view the court's register of actions in the case by clicking here.

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at


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