No need to grease the skids of 'streamlining' state personnel

July 21, 2013 

Now, one can’t blame state employees for being a little hesitant to support Gov. Pat McCrory’s desire to “streamline” the State Personnel Act, which is a way of saying he wants to make it easier to fire state workers.

Oh, he says it’s because the law makes it so hard to fire people that sometimes managers don’t even bother when they should. Besides, McCrory has told groups on the stump, the same law makes it hard for him to single out people for praise and more money, too.

But remember: This is the governor who once referred to some state workers as “seat warmers.” And because some state employees and their representatives have criticized Republican policies, those employees are naturally suspicious that “streamlining” might be just another term for “payback.”

State workers in many cases are paid more modest wages than many could make in private business, but state employment brings with it a pretty good pension plan and security, through the personnel act, against politically motivated firings. That seems a pretty good tradeoff. It does not need changing.

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