Thursday, January 8, 2009

Daniels' opponents want "optional reforms"

Besides Robert Downey Jr., who ever chose optional reform?

A centerpiece of Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels' reform agenda is based on a bipartisan commission's recommendations, which have called out Indiana for government redundancies and excess at local and state levels. With $ so tight, you'd think that now would be the perfect time to streamline and throw the dirty bathwater out (you can read about some of these inefficiencies here).

You'd think wrong. Senate President Pro Tempre David Long, a Republican, is balking at adopting Daniels' reforms, suggesting instead they be made "options" for counties to choose. This is smart, because counties would rather have fewer paid, elected employees and less money to play with.

It's about as meaningless a suggestion as one of the Governor's recent ideas for addressing the budget deficit: ask state employees to voluntarily forgo pay raises this year.

Except for Jesus, people usually don't like to voluntarily make their lives worse. We'll see how the optional reforms and voluntary pay situation works out.