Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tea Party lawmakers block Quezada’s amendment to protect state employees, keep hundreds of millions of federal dollars in state coffers

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Today Rep. Martin Quezada, D-Phoenix (District 13), offered an amendment to HB 2571. The bill, which is part of the governor’s personnel reform legislation, would remove merit system due process rights for state employees and could jeopardize hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.

Quezada’s amendment would have clarified that state employees who are paid with federal dollars would not be affected by the bill. The amendment addresses provisions of HB 2571 that would put the state out of compliance with the Intergovernmental Personnel Act of 1970. This act requires states receiving money from the federal government for certain agencies and programs to have a merit system in place in order for employees to be paid using federal money.

A "merit system" provides government employees protection from politically-motivated personnel decisions by requiring due process rights. Merit systems are commonly used all over the country by federal, state and local governments and were put in place to prevent political patronage.

If Arizona is out of compliance with these federal regulations, it could lose hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.

“This amendment would have helped to protect state employees and would have kept hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding coming into Arizona,” Quezada said. “Without the amendment, the implications of this legislation are devastating."

After lengthy debate in the Committee of the Whole, the amendment failed. Tea Party legislators passed the bill by a vote of 39-19. All House Democrats voting on the bill voted no. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.


1 comment:

  1. The funny thing (not ha ha, but odd and sad) is that these TP activists act like the haves and have mores that they protect when many of them don't have a pot to piss in. They truly believe that some day they'll have buckets of dough like their supporters. These poor fools are delusional, and are setting themselves up for a huge disappoinment. Guess they'll just have to learn the hard way. Can't say I'll feel sorry for them when they find out what useful TP tools they've been.