Sunday, August 28, 2011

Privatization The Malloy Way

First, the good news, according to a story in CTMirror:
“As part of a larger shift toward privatizing services, the state Department of Developmental Services (DDS) is phasing out a state-run early intervention program for infants and toddlers over objections by public-employee unions.”

As a general rule, when a state service is privatized, workers are let go, and the private firm replacing the workers performs the service at a lesser cost because – both state payroll and incidental costs, such as pensions and health care, are also reduced. That is why some cost conscious states resort to privatization – TO SAVE MONEY, everywhere in short supply.

And now the bad news. Union objections to the announced privatization of the state run early intervention program for infants and toddlers was, as might be expected, fierce – because unions do not wish to see their dues paying union ranks diminished.

Union friendly Connecticut is sensitive to union concerns. And so:

Joan Barnish, a spokeswoman for DDS, explained the rational for privatization: “… There are 43 other programs run by private providers that can serve the infants and toddlers who need early intervention services.”
That’s the good news.

And now for the bad news: The staff of the state-run program, Early Connections, will be redeployed elsewhere in the state. Ms. Barnish, soothing ruffled feathers, assured union objectors, “No one's going to be without services, and no one's going to lose their job.”

So then, the state will not save costs in reduced salaries or pensions. In fact, it will be expending more money than previously by paying the additional costs necessary to farm out work to private concerns, while at the same time redeploying state workers elsewhere, thus increasing net costs.

As an added amusement, the same union bright bulbs who at first rejected Governor Dannel Malloy’s Plan A – the poor things had to be bludgeoned into compliance; some people just don’t know how to accept the near surrender of the administration to union demands as an answer – have announced they plan to fight the faux privatization effort.  

Connecticut Commentary wishes to open the matter to a general discussion: Breathes there anywhere in fair Connecticut a legislator who genuinely believes that this brand of "privatization" is to any degree at all rational? We are taking names.

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