VSEA Waits (& Waits) For State’s Response To Allowing Employees To Be Surveyed

Consultant Wants To Survey State Employees Via State E-Mail But State Won’t Allow, Prompting This Nov. 16 Letter To The Secretary Of The Administration From VSEA Director Jes Kraus.

Secretary Neale Lunderville
Agency of Administration
109 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05609-0201
November 16, 2009
Dear Neale,
As you are well aware, the Government Accountability Committee has contracted with the Public Strategies Group (“PSG”) to review and evaluate Vermont’s governmental structure and operations. Their goal is to identify short-term savings for the current financial crisis, as well as to identify long-term, more strategic changes. As part of its information gathering, PSG would like to send a survey to frontline state employees, to ask for their help in generating cost-savings ideas, and to provide input on operational efficiencies. VSEA strongly believes that frontline employees are best suited to provide this type of input, since they are in the thick of providing direct services to Vermonters, and are intimately familiar with the day-to-day operations of their individual programs and departments. 
It is my understanding that the Administration is resistant to allowing frontline employees to receive and participate in the PSG survey over the State e-mail system. This is particularly concerning because frontline employees, with a few exceptions, are also noticeably absent from the Administration’s own “Tiger Teams.” I urge you to reconsider, and to allow use of the State email system for the purpose of participating in the PSG survey. It is imperative that frontline employees have an easy mechanism through which to provide their input. Restricting their input does a disservice to the PSG process and to Vermonters as a whole. 
Please let me know, as soon as possible, whether the Douglas Administration intends to allow use of the State’s email system for participation in the PSG survey. As always, feel free to contact me directly with questions and concerns.
Very Truly Yours,
Jes Kraus, Director
cc: PSG Steering Committee