State's Grab for Private Sector Jobs is a Giant Step Backward!
by Keli'i Akina, Ph.D., President/CEO, Grassroot Institute of Hawaii
Hawaii state government officials have announced plans to transition at least 99 contracts involving hundreds of jobs from from the private sector to government paid positions. This ruling means that existing non-government contracts will be terminated and approximately twelve government departments will hire state workers to fulfill the work of those contracts.
The work includes many blue collar jobs such as grounds keepers and janitors as well as construction workers. Hawaii News Now has spoken with various analysts and calls this "...a move that could cost taxpayers millions and create hundreds of new state jobs."
When asked why the governor is not challenging this ruling, his chief of staff stated that they wish to avoid any further litigation. What he did not and could not truthfully say is that this is a move that will save taxpayers money or ultimately provide better services.
In fact, research would suggest that the move is a backward one for the state of Hawaii given the growing national trend of privatizing government jobs in order to improve cost effectiveness and quality of services. See, for example, the many reports on privatization in the city of Sandy Springs, Georgia. Or consider the rationale for the recent shifting of the labor contracts at the state hospitals on Maui from public unions to the private sector.
The levels of pension and lifelong health care benefits provided to public workers is a major factor in the state's high levels of unfunded liabilities. Instead of adding to the future debt that our children must pay off, the government should be seeking ways of relieving taxpayers of unnecessary burdens.
Oct 7, 2015: Taxpayers will pay more as 'Arbitration' Forces more UPW Make-Work Jobs