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Archive for Friday, June 17, 2011

Brownback administration lays off 85 Kansas Dept. of Labor employees

Dept. of Labor says layoffs are ‘fiscal necessity’

June 17, 2011

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Gov. Sam Brownback’s administration on Friday laid off 85 state employees at the Kansas Department of Labor.

A statement released by KDOL states: “Fiscal necessity requires that KDOL make the very difficult decision to reduce its workforce. Decisions by the prior administration to utilize one-time funds for ongoing personnel and administrative costs and reduced funding from the federal government have contributed to the need for this decision.”

With the layoffs, the agency, which among other jobs administers unemployment compensation, would have about 430 employees, said KDOL spokesman Matt Manda.

Sherriene Jones-Sontag, a spokeswoman for Brownback, said state employee layoffs also were the result of Cabinet secretaries working on efficiencies, and responding to budget cuts.

“Secretaries have been looking, for five months, at how agencies are structured, to make agencies more efficient and responsive, and now they are beginning to implement those plans,” she said.

KDOL is led by Secretary Karin Brownlee, a Republican appointed by Brownback who took office in January.

Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka said he was not convinced that layoffs were necessary.

“For a governor that is advocating the creation of jobs, to me it seems contrary to that goal is to be laying off people,” Hensley said. “Previous administrations have been successful in preventing layoffs.”

During the just completed legislative session, Brownlee had sought legislation that would have made all employees at the Labor Department unclassified workers who would serve at the pleasure of the secretary and not have Civil Service protections. Legislators, however, didn’t approve the measure.

Since Brownback took office in January, there has also been a large number of terminations at the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, although many of those employees have been replaced with new hires. SRS has declined repeated requests to say how many have been laid off and how many have been hired.

Comments

Bob_Keeshan 3 years, 3 months ago

And yet last month there are over 20 new $100,000/year jobs available for new hires at SRS.

I'm sure the same has happened at Labor. Il Marrone just loves to fire as many "state employees" as he can all while handing out more high paying administrative jobs than ever before.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Incorrect, Captain.

Those aren't "new" jobs within SRS. Brownback's hacks simply replaced existing hacks. Those jobs were all sweet, unclassified, patronage jobs. The fact people held them so long is because heretofor, SRS (the largest State agency or some such) was something of a sacred cow in that the elected hacks didn't want to muck around with the mess they knew they'd make.

The fact Brownback replaced them is just bizness as usual in this dumbed down state.

Again, thems weren't/aren't NEW jobs......the people who had been in them were....ummmm....shall we say "relieved of their command.". Oh, and by the way....you know how many people that group of hacks had terminated during their reigns of terror and mediocrity? Answer: PLENTY.....

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Bob_Keeshan 3 years, 3 months ago

False statement. There are new jobs and those who were replaced were making lower salaries.

In addition, those who were replaced were Kansans with no ties to the administration. Contrast that with loading the entire staff with individuals who will quit their jobs and return to their home states as soon as Brownback is no longer Governor.

That is also incredibly dangerous for an agency, particularly an agency like SRS that serves the same populations sometimes for decades.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Let us take, for examples, TWO "old guard" Senior Level staff that were replaced:

Bobbie Mariani who held the position of Economic and Employment Support Director in the Integrated Service Delivery section. In 2010 we see she was given $$76,149.84 in salary. She has been replaced with Kathe Decker. Find how much Decker is getting paid. It ain't at http://www.kansasopengov.org/StateGovernment/SGPayGrid/tabid/1553/Default.aspx

Tanya Keyes had been Children and Family Services - Director and she was given $77,325.04 in 2010. She has been replaced by Grade D hack: Gina Meier-Hummel. Find out what she is getting paid.

Oh....here's a third one: The Regional Director for the KC Metro Region (who, by the way was the higest paid Regional Director within SRS, despite the fact she was also the newest), one Lori Alvarado was given $80,294.50 for 2010. She has been replaced with Republican card carrier Phyllis Gilmore. Find out how much she is being given.

I think you best consult with Mr. Moose because you're barking up the wrong tree.....

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truman1902 3 years, 3 months ago

If it's past 5PM on Friday, then it's Pink slips for Kansans!!! Labor kicking labor out the door! Clearly the kind of middle class employees that we can't tolerate in Topeka, Wichita or anywhere else ..The word SHAME doesn't even come close to decribing this debacle..

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irvan moore 3 years, 3 months ago

wow, unemployment in kansas on the rise

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Stain 3 years, 3 months ago

The Republicans ran on their promise to create jobs, back in 2010.

Has even one Republican created even one job yet?

When will voters wake up and stop believing these con artists?

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

I was going to say 85 more people that we will be paying unemployment to, but upon reading further, I realize these are the people who administer unemployment benefits---so who will be there to process the applications?

Let'em eat cake!

(Just when I think I can't despise Brownback and his dictatorial, crush the middle class into proverty ways anymore, I find that I can.)

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overthemoon 3 years, 3 months ago

In trying to get information about my UI claims last year, it took 105 tries to get through to anyone on the phone. 105. I am not exaggerating nor kidding. The staff was already severely overworked and one woman I talked to told me it was physically and emotionally draining as they sat all day and heard about people's entire lives going down the tubes.

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sr80 3 years, 3 months ago

Now i have 85 more people to compete with for that job at McDonalds !!! Thanks alot Brownie !!

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Scott Tichenor 3 years, 3 months ago

Yea, he'll balance this budget alright, on the backs of now unemployed Kansans. Can't wait for the job numbers to come out as his grade card. Guess with all those illegal aliens Kobach wants to keep out those folks can all go out and work the fields by hands in western Kansans and replace them. That's the spirit, Gov! Keep that corporate welfare flowing to the oil and gas companies though. They're LOVING it.

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straightforward 3 years, 3 months ago

Yes, because it would be outrageous if some of these people actually had to go find hardworking jobs in order to support themselves and their families without relying on an unemployment check from the state.

I'm also curious to know what field work is done by hand in western Kansas?

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jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

Missing the point.

All of those laid off from public jobs are now unemployed.

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mloburgio 3 years, 3 months ago

i can at least say i did not or ever would vote for pious sam brownback.

new bumper sticker i saw today. "of course it hurts, you're getting screwed by an elephant"

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Fred Mertz 3 years, 3 months ago

Why can't you use the same criteria for Brownback?

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Fred Mertz 3 years, 3 months ago

I doubt that Brownback will fire Number_1_ Grandma and most likely doesn't have a clue who she is.

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

Hypothetically speaking, if the majority of the SRS and Labor employees(as well as perhaps any others we don't yet know about) who've been fired happen to belong to one political party, would this be legal?

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gkerr 3 years, 3 months ago

Deec, Unfortunately politics is a spoils system of sorts. Big city machines, usually democrat, hire cronies and fire bureaucrats hired by the opposition from the opposite party, when they were in power if they ever were. I'm sure some of that is going on here, how much I don't know. This is not new to Brownback I'm sure previous democrat regime did the same thing.
The difference is we are in a true economic crises nationwide and States must cut back as tax revenues are down cause business and commerce are down. We are still in a recession and it is about to be a double dip or worse. Even the New York fat cats on Wall street- bankers, stock brokers, investment arbitrage corps, are about to send out tons of pink slips according to WSJ and New York Times. Gkerr

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

Except it sounds like at least some of these firees were not highly placed admin. sorts, but rather ordinary low level folks who'd held their jobs through one or more transitions in the past. Just because other administrations have done it, doesn't make it right. I was taught that as a small child. In addition, the fiscal crisis the world is experiencing was artificially created by Wall Street and the banking industry with the full consent of governments that cut their revenues and increased their spending simultaneously under the pretext that somehow less income means more income.

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BigPrune 3 years, 3 months ago

I guess things like this are not supposed to happen since these were government jobs and government paychecks come from the taxpayer's hard earned dollars. Job layoffs are only supposed to happen in the private sector.

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Scott Morgan 3 years, 3 months ago

Save it BigPrune some do not understand economics. Yes of course public jobs can be lost in times like this.

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

The State of Kansas is broke! We have no money! We can't afford to pay workers, we can't afford the arts, we can't afford to properly school the children, but we have money to burn on an unneeded new STATE LOGO! Yeah! Throw out those old business cards and envelopes, folks! July 1st is almost here!

Psychopaths and hypocrites! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52SGkR...

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ivalueamerica 3 years, 3 months ago

he is really going to hurt the state in a way that will probably take decades to recover.

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1983Hawk 3 years, 3 months ago

Gutless punk. Drop your bomb on the livelihood of 85 families at 4:59pm on a Friday so as to minimize press reaction. And its not like a lot of em won't end up being replaced with partisan hacks and Hitler youth brought in here straight from the right-wing think tanks.

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

"Since Brownback took office in January, there has also been a large number of terminations at the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, although many of those employees have been replaced with new hires. SRS has declined repeated requests to say how many have been laid off and how many have been hired." This seems like an investigative report waiting to happen, complete with a FOIA request if needed. Surely the number of employees in a state dept. would be a matter of public record?

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jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

I'd think so, and I had the same thought.

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Paul Decelles 3 years, 3 months ago

Of course since we no longer have an independent legislature in Kansas and no media outlets that will do investigative journalism any more, Brownback can do what ever political hackwork he wants with near total immunity.

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Paul Decelles 3 years, 3 months ago

Of course since we no longer have an independent legislature in Kansas and no media outlets that will do investigative journalism any more, Brownback can do what ever political hackwork he wants with near total immunity.

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

While you're at it, FOIA up some information on our new state logo. Who designed the new state logo? How many jobs did the new state logo create? How much did it cost to implement the new state logo?

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BigPrune 3 years, 3 months ago

The modern day Hitler youth are called the Obama youth.

here's a catchy tune by an Obama cult in California http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54tjbg...

Notice they replaced the brown shirts with blue shirts.

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BigPrune 3 years, 3 months ago

A much better one with an eerie comparison of the Obama Youth and the Hitler Youth http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdPSqL...

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kernal 3 years, 3 months ago

Now that we know some of the SRS employees who were terminated have been replaced, will some of the people laid off from KDOL also be replaced?

Hope someone is watching to see if the replacements are from out of state.

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sciencegeek 3 years, 3 months ago

The public isn't supposed to know this, but the replacements were not necessarily Kansans. And interpretation of the regulations for hiring and firing is under the control of a gubernatorial appointee. And what's happened at SRS and KDOL is just the beginning.

As to why the media hasn't jumped on this, your guess is as good as mine. Scott Rothschild is the only reporter I've seen write about it anywhere in the state. (THREE CHEERS FOR SCOTT!!!)

It'll sure never be covered in the Topeka paper!

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Katara 3 years, 3 months ago

I read that blog and this is why all public employees should be allowed to be in a union.

Required to ask your supervisor for permission to use the bathroom? Seriously?

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kernal 3 years, 3 months ago

That also occurs on jobs in the private sector, Katara.

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scott3460 3 years, 3 months ago

Another good reason for a union.

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Katara 3 years, 3 months ago

And? Does the fact that it occurs in the private sector somehow take away the need for a public employees to unionize?

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nobody11 3 years, 3 months ago

I think you forgot to post this to the Wichita Eagle site - kansas.com. I think so far since you posted this on LJ and CJ it has increaced the number of hits by about 20,000.

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randy1956 3 years, 3 months ago

Yeah my wife got laid off at the state, been there about 10 years . Now unemployement and no health insurance. Way to go Brownback. Thats the way to create new jobs.

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

Did you ever notice how loud pigs squeal when you shoo them away from the trough?

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jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

Any evidence that these and SRS employees who've been fired aren't decent, hardworking employees?

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

Any evidence that they are? Most in civil service are lazy hangers on with no ambition and no reason to do anything but the bare minimum required to keep our tax dollars deposited in their bank accounts every other week. Go register your car or renew your license and see how motivated those people are to serve you quickly and efficiently.

SRS is a special case of power-corrupted lazy bureaucrats that would as soon wreck a home as put their feet on the floor in the morning. SRS employees are just about the worst civil servants around.

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jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

Actually, I've had very good experiences at the DMV and registering my car.

MN is correct - somebody who makes a claim has the burden to prove it.

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

I've waited over an hour on occasion. The people behind the counter couldn't care less. They just kept going the same speed like they couldn't see the line formed to the door.

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

L275: "Most in civil service are lazy hangers on with no ambition and no reason to do anything but the bare minimum required to keep our tax dollars deposited in their bank accounts every other week."

Quit making stuff up.

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MyName 3 years, 3 months ago

I love how you're the one making the specious claims and then you ask us to disprove them.

So much for logic, reason, or accountability.

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grimpeur 3 years, 3 months ago

Did you ever notice that the pigs are, in fact, still at the trough?

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

Brownback has closed several of the troughs. That's why the little piggies are crying wah wah wah every time you here from them.

The little piggies may still be where the trough was, but my money isn't there for them any more.

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

Check into the new high paying jobs Brownback created in the Dept. of Commerce!

I must say, that new state logo (the one we don't need) looks sharp. I wonder how many jobs that logo has created. Dept. of Commerce jobs!

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grimpeur 3 years, 3 months ago

No, the troughs are still very much open for business. For little piggies and big ones. And they're about to open even wider, as SRS starts sucking your money away faster than ever.

Brownback is the typical right-wing liberal that doesn't worry that his actions don't square with the idea of fiscal responsibility or small government.

Some people are deluding themselves into thinking Brownback cares about this state. He doesn't. Neither will his new and expensive appoin...sorry, hires.

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MyName 3 years, 3 months ago

I think you've got the government handouts to rich buddies/campaign donors confused with people who actually do work for the government and get paid for it. The pigs are still at the trough.

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

"I think you've got the government handouts to rich buddies/campaign donors confused with people who actually do work for the government and get paid for it."

Is there a difference? Don't try and tell me that connections and the bribery of friendship won't and doesn't secure jobs for cops, garbage men and various low level bureaucrats.

Some are still at the trough, both the high rollers and the hangers on. They will always be there. There is no perfect.

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

"Did you ever notice how loud pigs squeal when you shoo them away from the trough?"

The Koch Bros. have been shooed away from the trough? When? Where?

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

When the Koch Bros. were getting logging roads paid for by the taxpayer, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When the Koch Bros. got gov't contacts that even right-wing groups complained was a open quid pro quo for campaign donations to the Bush election efforts, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When the Koch Bros. got not bid contracts to be the exclusive buyers of Iraqi oil, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When the Koch Bros. collected heath insurance subsidies even while funding astro-turf Tea party events railing against gov't health insurance, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When Papa Koch was making his first millions building oil refineries for Stalin, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When the Koch Bros. were helping Venezuela market its oil to avoid American efforts to isolate the Dictator Chavez, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When Sam arranged for property tax exclusions worth $50M for the Koch Bros. to build a pipeline, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

When the Koch Bros. collect billions in ethanol subsidies paid for by middle class taxes, did you complain about feeding at the trough?

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

We can do one at a time.

"When the Koch Bros. were getting logging roads paid for by the taxpayer, did you complain about feeding at the trough?"

I didn't know we had logging roads in lawrence or even in kansas so I'm going to assume you mean in some other state.

First, is it federal or state or local government building the road? If the road is not in Kansas or paid for with federal money, why do you care? That's other people's business, no yours. It isn't just a prop for your agenda.

I want to know the circumstance behind the payment. If the federal government owns the land or is buying the tress and as a condition of the sale of the trees, roads were to be paid for by the government as part of the payment to koch tree killers inc, then good for koch tree killers inc. If the government is in no way connected to the sale of the trees except as tax man yet still pays for the roads, then find everyone involved and put them in prison. There may be other legit reasons for the government building the roads. What might be a logging road today might be planned to be the next I70 through Colorado in 50 years. Any similar reason would exonerate both accused parties in your first example.

What's it going to be then, eh?

Note: 3 free internets to whoever knows what book that line starts.

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

A. I own the forest. B. My tax money is paying for the roads to haul out the timber. C. Timber sales lose money for the taxpayer. D. "Find everyone involved and put them in prison." George W. Bush lives in Texas. Need an address?

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

"A. I own the forest."

If you own the forest, aren't you the only one that can build a road there without trespassing? Who else could possible build the road but you, or whever you hire?

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

So, to sum Lib up: No, corporations feeding at the trough is a-okay.

Move on people. Nothing to see. Just ordinary bubblehead hypocrisy.

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beatrice 3 years, 3 months ago

Now, don't you feel good about yourself Liberty. You are so much better than working people, and especially those who just lost their jobs. What a hero you are.

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love2fish_ks 3 years, 3 months ago

This 20% or 1 in 5 reduction in force for DoL makes sense. Synergies have been gained over the years through process improvement and computer automation of manual processes. There is no life time employment. The state can do just fine without them.

KDOT is fat and needs 40 - 50% reduction in the computer and tech services headcount. The state needs to consolidate their IT infrastructure into one organization.

The state has a major problem ahead with fixed cost in Prisons and Medicade. Education has made a small contribution (51% of the 2012 state budget) and the other organizations need to contribute more than 20% or education will be hit harder.

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

Created jobs in the Dept. of Commerce. High paying jobs, not minimum wage jobs. I wonder how many jobs that new state logo created?

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woodscolt 3 years, 3 months ago

Creating jobs for kansans. Now do you believe in slimeback. I guess the "i told you so's" may be inserted here. Wonder how many of those 80 people voted for slimeback.

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

He created some high paying jobs in the Dept. of Commerce. And he created a new state logo, which, I'm sure, will bring more jobs to this state. Those business cards, web-pages, and envelopes aren't going to change themselves.

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woodscolt 3 years, 3 months ago

I can't think of a bigger waste of money in hard times than a new logo and all the wasted money spent on it. A perfect example that this dictator train wreck is not about saving money.

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mloburgio 3 years, 3 months ago

The state has a major problem and it's name is pious sam brownback. just wait till next year they will place a cross on the capital and you'll need to be a christian conservative to enter.

"Of course it hurts, you're getting screwed by an elephant!"

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woodscolt 3 years, 3 months ago

You gotta love people who complain about not enough jobs on one forum lauding the losing of jobs on this one. The train wreck continues

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ridinthefence 3 years, 3 months ago

Slimeback, is that what he got out of his prayer meeting? Probably paving the way for new positions at 100 K+ year! Lovely

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sunny 3 years, 3 months ago

YEAH! Keep hacking away Brownback! Too bad Obama doesn't follow in Browns footsteps!

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

How about that new state logo! It's not all bad, he created some high paying jobs in the Dept. of Commerce then put some of his buddies into them. Shyeaahyaaa! Suckas!

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OldSoldier 3 years, 3 months ago

How about digging into the new hires at SRS? Compare their new salaries with those who they replaced? Betcha the new hires are costing the tax payers MORE than the people they replaced. The new hires all came from out of state.

Also, there is a tremendous knowledge vacuum at SRS with the middle management staff having been purged. Try looking at the idiotic decision to cut all contracts and grants by 3%. Many contracts and grants are 100% federally funded, so Kansans are turning federal dollars back to the feds. DUH! When questioned internally about this decision, one upper management new hire said, "There are 100% federally-funded contracts and grants?"

Cronyism costs a lot of money.

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lunatic 3 years, 3 months ago

Do any of you complainers actually own a business or are self employed? Just curious because I doubt it.

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somebodynew 3 years, 3 months ago

That is not the point zip. These are people who were trying to earn a living and not drain the system. AND, it would be different if these jobs just disappear and actually save money. They will not. This is not just happening at SRS or DOL, it is all through the State. This administration has brought in more and more of their "friends" at very high salaries while laying off people.

The sad part is that only the laying off makes the news and makes it sound like they are saving money. They are not. Someone else suggested, and I think it would be a good idea, if some enterprising journalist (I know they are few) would actually do an in-depth study, including salary comparisions, for this Administration.

Oh, and where are all the jobs that were promised??? (Unless you are fundamental "Christian" or related to Koch.)

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Crazy_Larry 3 years, 3 months ago

We want a new state logo!

We want a new state logo!

We want a new state logo!

We want a new state logo!

We want a new state logo!

Must have a new state logo!

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 3 months ago

Leave it to Sam Brownback and his republican sheep to reduce economic growth with machine gun rapidity.

Fire Sam Brownback = new economic growth.

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Getaroom 3 years, 3 months ago

Ok zippy sing along now, "happy trials to you..."

The headlines about this governor from now forward and until Brownbackward's term is over should read, "Republican Presidential hopeful Brown....". So long as the burden of the countries failing economy rests squarely on the shoulders of the middle class, all is well in this dictator governors kingdom of serfs. But then we can all take solace in knowing our golden parachute to a bright economic future, "the wetlands highway", finally got crammed down out throats. And the Christian Crusader marches on.

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

If the people who actually work in Topeka are to be believed, and I'm inclined to think they would have a better idea about the inside machinations going on, then the layoffs will actually cost more money. A no-bid contract was given to IT21 solutions for IT services at DOL. At least some of the SRS positions are being advertised as 3 year contract positions at $35-$55/hour. But I guess since they are "private" jobs at double the cost given to cronies, that's okay. www.kdol.net

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 3 months ago

Brownback brought back from Washington D.C. the privatization of government which of course comes with CEO's ,Golden Parachutes and shareholders.

More neoconservative reckless spending of tax dollars is what Brownback brought back from Washington D.C. Privatization does not mean less tax dollar spending or no more tax dollar spending. It's more like taking Kansas tax dollars away from Kansans then giving Kansas tax dollars to private corporations.

There has never been hard evidence presented that this would in fact save taxpayers money. It's all an illusion offered up by corporate america.

The most famous source of fraud happens to be private corp america. Brownback of course will looking to these corporations for political campaign money. That is his only agenda as a neocon poltician.

Brownback did not bring with any special skills. Moving Kansas government to private USA corporations is neither new industry,new jobs nor new economic growth. It's more like taking Kansas tax dollars away from Kansans then giving Kansas tax dollars to private corporations.

More neoconservative reckless spending of tax dollars is what Brownback brought back from Washington D.C. Privatization does not mean less tax dollar spending or no more tax dollar spending. It's more like taking Kansas tax dollars away from Kansans then giving Kansas tax dollars to private corporations.

Where are these tax dollars going? Why isn't the press following this closely and keeping taxpayers advised?

Why not recall Sam Brownback?

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

"Why not recall Sam Brownback?"

Because it's almost impossible to recall a state official in Kansas.

And if he committed a felony and were convicted and recalled, the governor appoints a replacement from the same party as the recalled. Kind of a Catch-22.

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

LJW reporters---take note. We would like to see some in depth reporting as suggested in some of the comments above.

Just a few examples:

Is money really being saved?

Are the people being laid off from a certain political party?

Which positions are being refilled and by whom and at what salaries?

What will be the effects of these layoffs in terms of work getting done? (I don't imagine all of the layoffs were just sitting around picking their noses.)

How many jobs/duties are being privatized and will this cost the same, less or more than it is now?

How many people have been hired from out of state and were there qualified people in the state for the jobs? What is the relationship of the out-of-state hires to Gov Brownback?

How are so-called faith-based organizations being used by the state government?

Inquiring minds want to know.

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

Damn, Tange, use words I can understand. Ramificatory isn't even in my dictionary.

I never know if you're agreeing with me or insulting me.

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Liberty275 3 years, 3 months ago

Shakespeare used to make up words too. "Ramificatory" is a good one. I vote we include it in a dictionary somewhere.

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Fred Whitehead Jr. 3 years, 3 months ago

"Decisions by the prior administration to utilize one-time funds for ongoing personnel and administrative costs and reduced funding from the federal government have contributed to the need for this decision.”

That says it all. "Prior (Democratic) administrration"......Yet another stab at destroying Obama, the opposing party, sensibility, need, and the realization that the incompetance of the CURRENT administration is doing nothing to affect the shortage of paying jobs in Kansas but preaching, praying and posturing in an imaginary religious fog for the fawning voters who elected this swine.

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

"Secretaries have been looking, for five months, at how agencies are structured, to make agencies more efficient and responsive, and now they are beginning to implement those plans."

Translation:

Now that the labor department will be permanently understaffed, corporations will now be free to prey on the carcass of the people without fear of government interference in their looting.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

ksfbcoach: Did you follow up on her conceptualization and go offer the homeless guy $50 to do your chores?

Or, like most Right Wingers, do you simply opine in writing about such affairs; arm chair quarterback (and generaling); and then do nothing?

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Mixolydian 3 years, 3 months ago

The article does need more investigation. It reads like the positions (or many of them) were either federal grant or stimulus funded positions and not SGF funded. Once the federal funds dried up the option was to find money to keep these employees, (which in this economy and state budget is difficult at best, other places would need cut) or dismiss them. . 1. How mant positions fell into this category? 2. How many positions were classified service lay offs? 3. How many positions were unclassified service terminations? 4. Many of the SRS terminations recently were for no other reason than political patronage (happens with every new administration, nothing new, suprising or shocking there) How many of these positions fell into that category and will have political appointment replacements?

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kernal 3 years, 3 months ago

ksfbcoach, that joke is still funny after all these years, no matter which party you belong to.

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

What would really happen is the republican would hire his buddy as a consultant and give him the $50. The buddy keeps $30, kicks back $5 to the republican, and hires the homeless guy for $15.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Mixolydian:

The SRS people replacements were already announced. http://www2.ljworld.com/documents/2011/may/27/srs-news-release/ and the names are all here: http://media.lawrence.com/news/documents/2011/05/27/SRS_News_Release.rtf

Look at the last paragraph.

Go here: http://www.srs.ks.gov/agency/Pages/KeyStaff.aspx

No "new" jobs....save for the faith based silliness.

What did everyone think was going to happen when this duffus Robert Siedlecki from Florida was brought to Kansas?

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63BC 3 years, 3 months ago

His bio says Siedlecki has degrees from Harvard and Cornell.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

http://www.khi.org/news/2011/feb/28/siedlecki-brings-conservative-agenda-srs/

63BC: Are you suggesting that Harvard and Cornell do not produce political stooges and hacks?

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jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

And his history in Florida with social services is pretty bad, from what I've heard.

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verity 3 years, 3 months ago

I haven't seen any new logo. I want to see the new logo.

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ashford 3 years, 3 months ago

I will bet the people laid off are lower level employees. The funny thing about lay off is that the people laid off are actually the ones doing the real job and getting their hands dirty. They don't lay off those big earners whose salary is that of four employees laid off or more. Those big earners probably don’t do much for the organization but as golf buddies for the decision makers. Bad leadership solution to a problem is always to lay off poor low earners at the bottom, but they leave those ones whose salaries are really bigger cost for the organization. Again, they don't want to lose their golf buddy while the organization suffers financially.

This is consistent with republicans' principle of governing and management. If you are poor working class, you don't matter, but they forget that productivity and wealth is based on pyramid structure. Large number of low wage earners and real workers at the bottom are the ones holding and keeping one leader at the peak there. The leader's livelihood and success depend on those at the bottom. The eventually run the organization to the ground based on this impractical principle. Republican are hypocrites, they believe in taking from the poor and give them to the rich. They are ambidextrous; the use one have to stop the poor from getting any help or I may say, hand out but they take their other hand to take hand outs from the government or from wherever they can get it. They believe in freedom and prosperity, but what they meant is to do what ever they want without accountability, and proper with it at poor people expense.

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63BC 3 years, 3 months ago

AP offered this fact in their story:

"The Department of Labor's budget is due to drop 37 percent from $1.15 billion to $782 million. The decline largely refelcts a reduction in federal funds."

Given that federal funds are dropping almost forty percent and these layoff represent fewer than twenty percent of the workforce at KDOL, this seems pretty reasonable, even necessary.

No amount of ranting will change budgetary facts.

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

What you selectively slice out of your quote is that this "drop" is due to the failure of Congress to continue funding assistance for the unemployed. Saying that the Republicans have no choice because the Republicans refused this particular choice is nonsense worthy of Sarah Palin.

In sum, GOP creates an economic crisis, good people lose their jobs through no fault of their own, and GOP refuses to help these people while standing in the way of every measure offered up to cure the problem.

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deec 3 years, 3 months ago

From the same article "Manda couldn't say exactly how much money the department hopes to save through the layoffs. "Until the entire process has run its course and things are finalized, we're not speculating on any exact figures," he said. So they don't know or won't say how much they think they'll save. I guess they haven't finalized all the no-bid consultant contracts with their cronies yet.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Sadly, that's ALL he seems to be doing....."messing around".....Just like Wally and the Beav did.....messing around and goofing off.....

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Stain 3 years, 3 months ago

He's going to destroy Kansas for his presidential ambitions. He's currying favor with the Tea Party Koch Brothers crowd.

This could backfire. By 2016 America will have seen what the Republicans had in store, and it wasn't creating jobs, which they ran on in 2010.

How many jobs has Brownback created?

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Carol Bowen 3 years, 3 months ago

"Any evidence that they are? Most in civil service are lazy hangers on with no ambition and no reason to do anything but the bare minimum required to keep our tax dollars deposited in their bank accounts every other week. Go register your car or renew your license and see how motivated those people are to serve you quickly and efficiently.

SRS is a special case of power-corrupted lazy bureaucrats that would as soon wreck a home as put their feet on the floor in the morning. SRS employees are just about the worst civil servants around."

Liberty275, your comments have no basis. Visit an SRS office sometime. They are incredibly busy, yet maintain courtesy to all even late in the day. The same is true with DOL. If there is a lazy state employee, there would be a counterpart in the private sector. Wouldn't it make more sense to assess the work that needs to be done?

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tomatogrower 3 years, 3 months ago

I find a lot of lazy employees in my business dealings. Before I owned my own business I, first worked in a factory, a non union factory. About 10% of the employees did the least amount of work they could get away with and not get fired, leaving those with a work ethic to pick up the load. They were paid the same as I was. When the company closed doors, because the city wouldn't give it major tax breaks, so the founders grandson coudn't continue to use company funds to "advertise" on his race car, I went to work as a para in a school. What I saw there was everyone working and helping each other get the job done. There was cooperation and hard work all around, no matter what hoops the politicians put in front of them. I now run my business like that. I try and create a team atmosphere, and I don't keep all the profits for myself. I actually allow them to trickle down - a theory that would work, if there weren't so many greedy people out there.

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Barry Watts 3 years, 3 months ago

Grow up! All this name calling sounds like something you'd hear in junior high. Open debate is wonderful, but you are sounding like idiots.

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

Of course it hurts. You're getting screwed by an elephant with a limitless supply of corporation paid for Viagra.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Well, let's not be sexist about this, Jimo. Maybe it's more like falling into a bottomless, endless.....ummmmm......well......you get the picture.....

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

Getting screwed is an equal opportunity endeavor. Witness Limbaugh's frequent fear of bending over and grabbing his ankles. (Not possible: Limbaugh is too fat to perform that physical feat.)

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

I concur, Jimo.

I will state, however, that many of these people being removed from their employment did the same thing to a lot of past employees whose only crime was to question authority. Too, within this department of labor shakedown, I will bet money that the bulk of the jobs in question were known by the person sitting in them to be limited term jobs....meaning when the person took the job, they were told it was finite; probably had to be re-newed every year or every other year or some such. Too, some may very well have been unclassified.

Evidently, within the Dept. of Labor, there seems to have been a LOT of going to the bathroom if one is look behind (pardon the pun) why new rules have been written and implemented. See: http://www.kdol.net/news/discussion/20/restroom-breaks-require-permission-from-supervisor-at-kansas-dept.-of-labor which is an internet web site put up by certain staff within the Dept. of Labor. That particular thread is entitled: "Restroom breaks require permission from supervisor at Kansas Dept. of Labor".

Too, within the KDOL, the powers that be have blocked tha ability of DOL staff to access the web site http://www.kdol.net

It's really sorta darkly funny because, again, what did people expect when Brownback came into office? This stuff is almost better than Bedtime for Bonzo given Brownback's peculiar ways what with "C Street" and the way he rolls, period. Ever have occassion to interact with "his office" whilst he was a sitting U.S. Senator? I had....several. Most unctuous. Slime everywhere.....and yet the people of Kansas made him their U.S. Senator and then made him their governor. shrug

The fact Brownback's proxy wanted to make all jobs "unclassified" speaks for itself. Ok, she didn't get her way. Fine....there's always a backdoor for the hack to weasel their way into. Always. If not today....then tomorrow....

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Jimo 3 years, 3 months ago

Oh I'm certain that the Department isn't a model of bureaucratic excellence, to be sure. But I wonder how much can be expected from a gov't agency that we all know was set up for failure from the beginning. You can't perpetually underfund people who have an incredibly difficult job, having to deal with some of the more sad cases we have. At least in the Bureau of Prisons they can just lock them in a cell and ignore them.

Unlike private enterprise, gov't has to take all comers. Gov't can't just refuse to serve certain citizens. Nor can gov't pursue a different 'market segment' because it doesn't like the clientele it has. And gov't, unlike private enterprise, has to do everything it does in the light of the public and justify its decisions to every gadfly and second-guesser who wants to show up to criticize.

If you don't believe in gov't then gov't will fail you 100% of the time.

What's ironic though is that virtually every hit show on TV involves people watching the workings of gov't employees ... cops, lawyers, judges, school teachers, medical investigators, postal carriers, U.S. marshalls, alien-seeking FBI agents, CIA spies, even wise-cracking city parks employees in Pawnee, Indiana. Shows about entrepreneurial masters of the universe foisting junk mortgages off on widows and marketing crap people don't need to children? Not so much. Listening to the wingnuts, you'd think Americans hated gov't workers like they hate sin. Turns out Americans are fascinated with gov't workers (and with sin) whatever the holier-than-thou hypocrites might tell you to the contrary.

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Well, Jimo.....I pretty much concur with all you've written above. It isn't just the DOL, however: All the state of Kansas agenices have relied upon an overworked and understaffed workforce since before Civil Service was, essentially, killed by the brain trust in Topeka. People constantly howl about the social workers in SRS getting the shaft, but, in reality, the social work staff have it good when compared to the people who do the nuts and bolts of that operation: The people who pass the peas: Those who process and manage the applications for public assistance. Ole Jack Rickerson, once "head" of the Kansas Dept. of Administration referred to these vital workers within SRS as "...glorified data processors...". Staff at the KDOC have been getting the shaft for many years as well. It's funny how state workers don't stick together, failing to understand THEY could be next....but this is a Kansas....a Right to Get The Shaft state. shrug

I believe 150% in government and am in wanton contempt of the busy body "volunteer" syndrome. Government is the people and is set up to protect the people. Relying on "volunteers" is utter folly. But that is another issue because it too becomes most clouded.... ("Volunteers" at the Lawrence Senior Center get first pickings at the day old bread that is donated to the place as a "perk" for being a "volunteer" (staff get first pickings too) irrespective of the fact that "free bread" is intended for disenfranchised seniors. shrug

Perhaps Brownback's actions will compel the workers of the state of Kansas to fight back for their lost merit pay system (funny how teachers get raises and more perks every year and state workers lose benefits and pay every year....) and actually UNIONIZE. Were a UNION in place and doing what it is supposed to do, a lot of this nonsense could have been avoided. However, most state workers detest UNIONS as much as the Posse Commitatus types out West of 59. shrug I doubt anything will come of any of this, though. I'm too old and worn out to see any light at the end of tunnel. I'm just glad I got me mines. I do what I can do: I've written, faxed, emailed and phoned all these jugheads in Topeka who are the deciders. It don't do much good, either. You're dismissed as aberrant, peculiar, and a crack pot.

We're a dinky little state that asked to have a bible thumping, born again, Opus Dei Right Wing wealthy to the high hills galloot run the state. We're getting what we asked for, eh?

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Alceste 3 years, 3 months ago

Most of the entire MidWest is "overweight". Get real.

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llama726 3 years, 3 months ago

Look at your comment, the mark of maturity.

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DrRobert 3 years, 3 months ago

Come on - what did you expect ? A whole political party dedicated to lifelong selfishness and greed, implemented at every opportunity.

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