July 29, 2011

House committee probes plans for new Department of Enterprise Services, Consolidated Technology Services agencies

An oversight committee of the state House of Representatives wasted no time in asking tough questions of the administration about the move to create the new Department of Enterprise Services and Consolidated Technology Services agency.

We already know that this new scheme to consolidate virtually all information technology functions in one agency, plus services now provided by the Department of General Administration and others, includes the stripping away of contract protections for some 100 employees and the inability to compete for work proposed for privatization.

Obviously, this is an issue of vital importance to current information technology employees in several agencies, like the soon-to-disappear Department of Information Services, and those in the Department of General Administration, which will be absorbed by the new DES.

But if you touch a computer in your state job or use state vehicles to do your job, chances are this agency consolidation will affect how you do your job. And it may not be for the better. So we hope you keep your eye on this issue as well.

At Wednesday’s meeting of the House General Government Appropriations and Oversight Committee, panel members asked tough questions showing they’d done their homework on concerns raised by Federation members. Those issues included: being classified differently and possibly paid differently; potential layoffs; which employees will be targeted to lose their collective bargaining rights as mandated by the new law;  among others.

Administration officials promised answers to the committee – and when they are, we’ll get them to you.

“The committee made it clear they wanted more information, not less, as such major reforms are implemented and that they will be closely monitoring to determine what legislative changes may need to be brought forward for next (legislative) session,” said Jeanine Livingston, the Federation’s contract compliance manager.

Here are documents presented to the committee.

This issue has many parts to it and the union intends to give voice to all affected members’ concerns.
Stay tuned.

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