To the editor:
It was interesting to read about the proposed bill that would eliminate the state’s classified employment system. This should not be a surprise to any current state employee. It appears to simply be a way to codify a practice that was introduced when Gov. Brownback took office. For the only time in my experience, at that time, all unclassified state employees were fired or forced into retirement and replaced by inexperienced friends and political allies of the administration. The amount of knowledge and agency experience that was lost was enormous.
Since that time I have seen one agency director create several unclassified support positions to provide employment for friends or relatives. None of the positions were open to experienced agency employees, and I am unaware of any interview process to attempt to determine qualifications.
With the current system of filling jobs, qualified employees can see no likelihood that that hard work will lead to an opportunity for advancement unless they belong to the correct church, political party or circle of friends.
I find it sad to see a situation where a previously professional workforce is gradually being replaced by less than qualified political appointees, much to the detriment of the agencies.