Wednesday, November 16, 2005

62: "Hold It Right There, Buster!"

At last, the Midnight Pay Raise is about to meet its demise. The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a repeal of the pay raise, in a package deemed acceptable to the Senate. Everybody gets the raise rolled back, including the judges.

A representative of Governor Rendell’s office, commenting on the Governor’s willingness to sign the repeal, said, "What else is there to say about it? The people have spoken; the Legislature has spoken. Governor Rendell’s focus is to repeal the pay raise and move on.”

What has not been widely reported is that the legislators voted themselves another pay raise.

Say what?!!

That’s correct, the legislators voted to restart the same 3% (or more) pay raises they have been getting for the past ten years. And it goes to the exact same group of folks the Midnight Pay Raise of last July went to – all the legislators, the judges, and the top officials in the Governor’s administration, including the Governor.

[See for the complete article from today’s Harrisburg Patriot News.]

Now, few object to them getting the same raises other state employees get, if the other state employees get the same raises, and at the same time, but they won’t.

In an attempt to justify this latest mugging of the Pennsylvania taxpayers, State Senate President Pro Tempore Robert Jubelirer said, "We turned it back to exactly where it was before July 7. That's what we said we would do, and we've worked very hard to do that."

Welllll, not exactly, Bob! There is still this matter of the unvouchered expenses and how the legislators, Governor’s staff, and judges used that to take their 16-34% raise from the previous crime (the Midnight Pay Raise now being repealed). Many of them wasted no time grabbing the money and running with it, and the legislature has made NO attempt to recover that money, or indeed, any money already paid under the Midnight Pay Raise.

The repeal bill makes no effort whatsoever to recover the early collection of the Midnight Pay Raise now being repealed.

The legislature has now voted itself yet another raise that will start next month.

They have made comments in the past to the effect that, “There’s just no way to recover that money.”

Sure there is Bubby! And here’s an example. A friend started employment with the state Department of Labor some years back. The bureaucracy was such that he received no pay for about 10 weeks. At the 6-week mark, he received an advance, and continued to do so. No taxes or deductions were taken out, and the advance was actually more than he was to be paid. When his regular, correct pay was finally issued, the state withheld all of one check, and part of the next to collect its overpayment. And you thought PennDot was the only state agency that existed just to make life tough for you!

Here is what GettysBLOG suggests. Since the Gettysburg area representative, the “Honorable” Steve Maitland was one who not only voted for the Midnight Pay Raise, but also took the early raise as an unvouchered expense, perhaps he should introduce an amendment to any convenient piece of legislation requiring the Department of the Treasury to withhold all raises from all who took the early unvouchered expense money, and any other persons who began collecting the higher rate of pay after the raise went into effect, until it is completely paid back; further, that if this does not fulfill the complete reimbursement of the repealed pay raise by the end of November, 2006, as projected, that it be deducted directly from the full paychecks of those individuals starting with the first pay in January 2006, and continuing until it has been fully repaid.

What’s fair, is fair.

Pennsylvania taxpayers and voters cannot allow ethical bankruptcy one inch of room in Harrisburg. As has been seen by the performance of the state government in this pay raise issue, ethical bankruptcy is rife within our state government.

Ethical bankruptcy in government leads to the financial bankruptcy of the people.

To allow those who greedily collected the early raise as an unvouchered expense, or those who waited for the raise to take effect, and then began collecting it, is to allow moral and ethical bankruptcy to continue. It is like being pregnant, either you are, or you are not. Either you are, or you are not, morally challenged and ethically bankrupt.

In no case should these people be rewarded for their own crime. Make no mistake about it, the Midnight Pay Raise, complete with Judicial interference, and the complicity of the Governor, including the unvouchered expenses, was a crime against the citizens of this Great Commonwealth. To date, not a single party to this crime has dropped their hubris and admitted to complete wrong-doing. They have, even after passing repeal legislation that is incomplete, continued to do the “Justification Dance”.

Your Pennsylvania legislators, judges, and members of the Governor’s administration, including the governor, have proven they have no sense of responsibility to the people of this Commonwealth, and are lacking in conscience and lacking the ability to feel remorse or guilt.

Clearly, these people are not who you want running things. If this “thumbing their noses” at the voters and taxpayers of Pennsylvania doesn’t convince you, then you are in bad straits my friend.

Remember, these are the same people who brought you those twin paragons of ethicless legislation in 2004, Acts 71 and 72. The Act 72 legislation that was enacted solely to give allure and legitimacy to Act 71, an act so full of conflict of interest, and moral decadence, and almost criminal negligence on the part of the legislature, that not even Act 72 could save it, was rejected by 80% of the state, yet the Governor, “Fast Eddie” Rendell, absolutely must have it to keep gambling in Pennsylvania, so he is devising a way to force it on the people of this Commonwealth.

Frankly, there isn’t a one of them, not the legislators, the judges, or members of the administration, worthy of shining your shoes. They have repeatedly proven they are there to keep themselves there long enough to feather their own nest, and the people be damned! They simply do not care about you.

Don’t let them get away with it!

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!"--GettysBLOG

Remember in May! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!

Remember in November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!


“Legislation without representation is tyranny.”

“Arrogance is a fool’s disease!”

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