September 30, 2015
Speaker Shap Smith at a 2010 Vermont rally to support Wisconsin labor unions.
In a VPR story today about the State only just revealing that Vermont is on the hook for $8 million above and beyond what lawmakers just budgeted for in FY 2016 (insert look of disbelief here), Speaker Smith is quoted attributing the oversight to a lack of staff and resources.
“It does point to a challenge within the process, which is that the Legislature is under-staffed and under-resourced, and to a certain extent we are reliant on the administration for providing us with the information that helps us build the budget,” [Speaker] Smith says.
Let’s hope Shap will now sympathize with state employees working in DCF, ESD, Corrections, Green Mountain Psychiatric Care, 911 Dispatch Centers, the Vets’ Home and other state agencies and departments who have been asking for increased staffing and resources for years–to little or no avail.
We also hope the Speaker agrees that "right-sizing" government means proper staffing and resources for all state agencies and departments, especially those who protect Vermont’s children, provide services to those in need and protect our communities.
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