Has your salary been frozen?
MPR’s Tim Pugmire has a story today with union reaction to Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s call for a wage and benefit freeze on state workers and teachers.
“What’s crazy about that kind of a statement, any compensation savings when we’re in as much financial trouble as the state of Minnesota is in, will not protect personnel,” Jim Monroe, who heads one of the several unions in Minnesota state government said. “Those savings will then be diverted to another area of the budget to plug that hole in the dike.”
According to a recent report in unemployment, government work was a comparatively safe place to be during this period of massive job losses. But in January, the unemployment rate among people associated with state government dropped 2.1%.
But the government “industry” is projected to lose only .6% of its jobs in the state (2,642 jobs) in 2009.
But, unlike private industry, the CEOs of state government are proposing a wage freeze that could extend for years. A bill at the Capitol would prohibit and wage increases for any government workers until the middle of 2011.
If this all sounds familiar, Gov. Pawlenty proposed the same wage freeze during the last budget ‘crisis’ in 2003.