Idaho Speaker Denney: Move to kill 2% pay hike for state employees is more bark than bite

House Speaker Lawerence Denney, R-Midvale, says the challenge to the Legislature's budget committee is more about process than a disagreement that could stall budget writing and delay adjournment.

On Tuesday, with House GOP leadership's backing, Rep. Steve Hartgen, R-Twin Falls, introduced House Concurrent Resolution 41, which calls for no raises for state employees. Gov. Butch Otter recommended a one-time 3 percent bonus. The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee agreed on a 2 percent raise, an assumption it adopted as it began passing agency budget bills this week.

Denney said he wants a hearing in the committee with jurisdiction over state employee compensation, Commerce and Human Resources.

"We thought it was appropriate to have the discussion in the germane committee, rather than have it go strictly through the joint committee," Denney said. "I suspect we come to the same conclusion, but it should be a policy-driven decision rather than a budget decision."

House Republicans met behind closed doors Tuesday to discuss spending. Denney said some members felt left out of the conversation. "The rumblings that we had in the caucus were when we brought up the budget everybody goes, 'Hey, we haven't had our say yet.'"

Denney said he expects the committee to hear HCR 41 by next week and rejected any suggestion that JFAC should delay budget setting until the matter is resolved.

"The joint committee is up against a timeline," Denney said. "They should continue right on. And if we come up with something different, we would run a trailer bill."

Sen. Dean Cameron, R-Rupert, is co-chairman of JFAC. He said that should the House pass HCR 41, he expects in would die in the Senate Commerce and Human Resources Committee chaired by Sen. John Andreason, R-Boise, who is among the Legislature's leading advocates of better pay for state employees.

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Does this include the proposed 4% raise for the Governor?

Same old same old.

Balance the budget on the backs of the state employees. It has worked for a long time, no need to change now.

House Concurrent Resolution = the formal way to whine

and show you are ticked off at the Senate.


Make-um work for that extra money, no ciggie breaks

Denney's remarks

make our legislators look like a bunch of children. It is outrageous to think of them haggling over a 2-3% raise for state employees. Just give those folks their salary increase and move on.
The legislators may just as well go home now, they have accomplished nothing of note. What a waste of time they are.

State employees

are, much like their federal counterparts, immune from the ravages of private sector influences, i.e., they have no incentive to improve either their job position, responsibilities, or performance. Raises are a 'given' and the fleecing of taxpayers makes it all wonderfully possible. Gov't employees cannot and would not ever find gainful employment in a competitive and dynamic private sector because they know that they would fall like wheat in a windstorm.

Typical stupidity

If you had any real knowledge, you would know that there have been no raises for nearly all state employees for many years. But most have been forced to take unpaid days off, and all have seen their insurance premiums go up and benefits go down. Why don't you keep your mouth shut if you don't have anything intelligent to say?

tracy, tracy, tracy

Those are pretty mean-spirited, bitter comments; not to mention entirely untrue of the majority of federal and state workers. I was one of the former for nearly 30 years and I was constantly working to improve my job position, abilities, responsibilities and performance. I had many friends who were state employees and they took their work seriously as well. Certainly there are a few bad apples just as there is in any private sector organization but don't cast your net so wide as to include everyone in your vile sputum.

They don't raises every

They don't raises every year, and individuals are always wanting to be promoted. You have a bunch of people working hard to earn the one management position as soon as that person retires. So you wind up spending 10 years at least, competing with other employees to fill the only one promotional opportunity you get. Your assumptions are blatantly wrong.

sorry. meant to reply to the

sorry. meant to reply to the same comment you replied to.

State/county employees

I am constantly amazed at the efficiency and expert professional treatment I have received from State and county employees of Idaho. Many of the people I have dealt with do not earn a high salary, either, but still work hard to serve the public.

I agree. I find the DMV on Benjamin is a great example of state

employees who are always friendly and efficient. Good Job!

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

The only state employees I have a problem with

Are the ones in the legislature.