Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Huntsman's 4-day work week not working

Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman is a bold man.

Recent boldness:

a. he's trying to reduce the sales tax to zero on food by raising the cigarette tax to the highest in the nation.

b. he's taken on Utah's tough liquor laws.

c. he had David Archuleta sing at his inauguration.

d. he introduced a four-day work week for state employees last August.

Unfortunately, "d" isn't working out so well in its bid to save the state $3 million by reducing energy costs:

Kim Hood, exec director of the Department of Administrative Services:

"At this point, I think the $3 million should be considered a stretch. I think we need the full year of a pilot program to determine what the savings are going to be."

Salt Lake Tribune on the disappointing results:

[State buildings manager] Harrington said state officials are been able to identify about 100 buildings where the opportunity for cost savings is significant. However, initial reviews show that about half of those buildings are reducing energy consumption by less than 10 percent, he said.

How and why the Governor did it (Ea):

The move was made by the governor with little-to-no input from state workers, residents or lawmakers and was one of the boldest initiatives he took during his first four years in office.

Huntsman is increasingly trying to frame himself as part of a new breed of Republicans that consider the environment a top issue, even in a state where many of his GOP colleagues believe global warming is a hoax.


Anonymous said...

Hey GOP2012, can you find out whether Huntsman's renewable plan has a mandate? I know Crist has one. Palin doesn't have one.

So, will the 2012 GOP primary be analogous to the 2008 Democratic primary where the primary distinction on domestic policy pertained to the presence of mandates? You recall how Hillary and Obama debated whether their respective health care plans should mandate that all adults be covered (they all agreed that a mandate should be imposed on kids).

So will Crist say to Palin, you need a mandate and will Palin use the mandate against Crist? We actually could have a substantive debate on this issue of the environment. Crist's problem is that his plan is indistinguishable from Obama's plan via the mandate and Palin's problem is how will she convince private companies to reach her goal of 50%.

gop 12 said...

You're right -- that would be interesting. But that issue just doesn't seem to be in the wheelhouse of a Republican primary debate. Of course, maybe by then, they'll all have their plans and can get into a plan-off.