The Illusion of Shrinking State Government
Back in September of 2008, Governor Rendell announced a state-wide hiring freeze in all agencies under his control to help curb declining revenues and a weakened national economy. Now, over a year later, Rendell has announced that more state layoffs will be coming this week, with 319 jobs being cut from 10 state agencies. What may seem like a significant cut in state staff is actually a marginal reduction.
One of the agencies to be hardest hit by the state layoffs is the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), facing a 5% staffing cut or 138 total jobs from their payroll. As it turns out, since January 2008, the DEP has hired nearly 170 new employees regardless of hiring freeze.
By laying off 138 staffers, the DEP hasn’t lost jobs…they’ve gained 30 in the past two years! This is just one agency; imagine how many total employees have been hired since the supposed “hiring freeze” began over a year ago.