Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Deval "Slasher" Patrick?

Gov. Deval Patrick says he wants "extraordinary budget-slashing power" to deal with the state budget. And as I point out in my column today, if Patrick did use his power to do any real budget slashing, it would certainly be extraordinary.

Every day we taxpayers get yet another reminder of how badly we're being ripped off by the state of Hacks-a-chusetts. Today's also comes from the Herald, where Charles Chieppo of the Pioneer Institute takes on the pension/benefits screwjob we're getting from state agencies:

MBTA employees can retire after 23 years - regardless of age - and immediately receive health benefits and collect a pension. State retirees can’t get health insurance or collect a pension until age 55 - still not a bad deal.

T pensions are arguably the nation’s most generous public sector pension benefits and undoubtedly the best in the transit industry. They’re a major reason MBTA fringe benefit costs are projected to consume 94 percent of estimated fare revenue by 2026... MBTA bus drivers are already the highest paid in the nation and other members of the Carmen’s Union are among the highest paid in the industry.

Highest pay, amazing benefits, and then retire at 43 and have the commuters and taxpayers pay you a pension and medical benefits for the rest of your life. Sounds like a great place for a "no more politics as usual" governor who says "miracles can happen here" to get started reforming the system.

So how about it, Governor "Extraordinary Budget-Slashing Powers?" Oh, I forgot: You can't even take on the police details.