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Iowa----Public Safety WILL be Compromised

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  • Iowa----Public Safety WILL be Compromised

    Iowa Lay off Plan

    Iowa DOC 515 Layoffs 262 vacant positions unfilled
    Iowa DPS 53 Layoffs 25 vacant positions unfilled

    The loss of positions are devastating to the DOC mission. We are talking 80+ positions AND not filling 26 already vacant positions at my facility with a total staff of +/- 435.
    The DPS numbers eliminate 20 State Troopers, 20 State Investigator Agents.....and others.



    Devastating ........................
    Iowa#1603


    http://www.desmoinesregister.com/art.../NEWS/91021028

    A total of 791 state workers would be laid off and 529 vacant positions would be eliminated under plans suggested by directors of state agencies.

    You can find a chart here showing reductions in each department.

    Of the state’s 20,488 full-time executive branch employees, the Department of Corrections would be hit hardest under the preliminary plans.
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    Of the proposed reduction of a total of 1,321 state government positions, 777 would be from the Department of Corrections with 515 layoffs and 262 vacant positions eliminated.

    Next hardest-hit is the Department of Human Services, with 79 layoffs and 149 vacant positions eliminated.

    But Department of Public Safety layoffs were not nearly as harsh as predicted last week.

    Iowa Gov. Chet Culver at 12:20 p.m. publicly released tentative plans for how state departments could absorb an unprecedented 10 percent across-the-board budget cut.

    The plans released today do not include the Board of Regents, statewide elected officials, and the Legislative and Judicial branches.

    “It is very important to note that this is the starting line, not the finish line,” Culver said in a statement.

    Culver said he disagrees with some of the recommendations, including suggestions to cut services to children, vulnerable adults, and areas of public safety.

    “Two-thirds of layoffs are in the Department of Corrections, which relies almost entirely on support from the general fund, and I want to find a way to mitigate that situation,” Culver said in a statement.

    “I will discuss them with department directors and the collective bargaining units as part of my review. I also want to be certain that there are no inconsistencies between these plans and what our departments are required to do by law.”

    The state’s nine prisons, which oversee about 8,400 inmates, would have fewer correctional officers to monitor convicts.

    This will mean “serious safety concerns” at the prison that holds the state’s most dangerous inmates: Iowa State Penitentiary at Fort Madison, the corrections plan says.

    Four towers that look over the prison yard at Fort Madison would close, and cell searches would be reduced, the budget document said.

    Caseloads would be double what’s recommended for probation and parole officers in the 5th Judicial District, which includes Polk County.

    The use of electronic monitoring for some high-risk offenders in the community would be reduced.

    Cuts for public safety would not as bad as first feared, under this plan. But the Department of Public Safety would still suffer the third most layoffs of any agency, with 53 layoffs and 25 vacant positions eliminated.

    Layoffs would include 20 troopers, 20 agents with the Division of Criminal Investigation, three other sworn officers, and 11 civilians, for a total of 54.

    Last week, public safety officials contemplated laying off 100 employees. And if furloughs weren’t possible, it could be necessary to lay off 169 officers and civilians, Public Safety Commissioner Eugene Meyer told staff last week.

    But Meyer gained $4.2 million in federal money by making an emergency application to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to reallocate money that had been previously designated for purchasing equipment and other purposes, a spokeswoman said today.

    The loss of 20 state troopers will mean the department will have fewer than 350 troopers patrolling Iowa’s highways. As recently as 2001, the State Patrol had more than 450 state troopers.

    The loss of 20 state troopers will mean the department will have fewer than 350 troopers patrolling Iowa’s highways. As recently as 2001, the State Patrol had more than 450 state troopers, Greene said.

    Iowans can expect longer emergency response time, no 24-hour law enforcement coverage in some areas, less law enforcement at Iowa’s casinos, and fewer narcotics trafficking and conspiracy cases to be investigated, officials said. They predicted fewer seizures of methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana and other drugs.

    Hundreds of Iowans with addictions to drugs or alcohol would not receive treatment because of a $1.3 million state cut. The state cut could trigger the loss of $2.3 million in federal matching money for addiction treatment, though the director of the Department of Public Health said he hoped that wouldn’t happen.

    There will be wide-ranging effects from the DHS cuts.

    Subsidies for Iowans who provide foster care and have adopted children will be cut 5 percent, DHS Director Charlie Krogmeier said this morning.

    Providers of both Medicaid and child welfare services will see their rates cut, for a savings of more than $18 million.

    Counties will get 10 percent less for mental health services.

    The child support call center in Marshalltown will close, displacing 50 contract workers.

    Funding for juvenile justice drug courts will end.

    Chiropractic services will no longer be covered for Iowans on Medicaid.

    Caseloads for workers in front-line positions and county and regional offices will continue to be high.

    The Department of Inspections & Appeals would see 10 layoffs. The cases of more than 1,000 children in foster care will cease being reviewed by local citizen volunteer boards because of the cuts curing the current fiscal year.

    The volunteer boards assess and report on case progress and help to assure and monitor compliance with federal child welfare requirements, said officials with the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals.

    In addition, from 100 to 200 children may lost the Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteer currently assigned to them, and fewer new children coming into the child welfare system will be assigned a volunteer, state officials said.

    College students’ aid money will be affected.

    More than $5.7 million in student aid awarded to be students would be reneged, if the governor approves the commission’s plan to cut all grant programs equally, according to the Iowa College Student Aid Commission.

    That would leave college students and their families to come up with the extra money to pay tuition next semester, unless the schools chip in additional aid, said Brenda Easter of the aid commission, which will see no layoffs.

    In the lower grade levels, the budget cut for preschool translates to 400 kids, but not all of them will be shut out of free preschool if school officials find savings in other ways.

    They could charge tuition or cut preschool teacher aides, for example.

    School lunch prices may go up because of a decrease in state support for hot lunch subsidies, which are required for matching federal money.

    Teacher training may be delayed for the Iowa Core Curriculum, a mandatory blueprint for what students will learn beginning in 2012.

    One school superintendent said politicians need to bite the bullet and raise taxes.

    “It doesn’t make a difference whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat, all you hear is, ‘We are not going to raise taxes at a time like this,’ and I think that is posturing on both sides just to look good,” Indianola Superintendent Michael Teigland said. “I think we need to rethink that after today’s announcements. There’s a quality of life issue in the state of Iowa that we have to be concerned about.”

    A statewide program for preventing child abuse will see almost 20 percent of its annual funding cut.

    The Iowa Child Abuse Prevention Program would get about $270,000 less from the Department of Human Services, under this plan.

    “Such major cuts go far beyond the 10 percent across-the-board reduction (DHS) faces, showing less regard for the value of preventing child abuse, as opposed to treating its after effects,” said Steve Scott, the executive director of Prevent Child Abuse Iowa.

    There would be 35 layoffs at the Department of Revenue. Iowans should expect a longer wait for tax refunds under the proposed plan that whacks 42 employees from the revenue department’s payroll.

    The Department of Cultural Affairs and Department of Economic Development would each lay off 7.

    A copy of the plan was released earlier to the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, which represents more than 13,000 state workers.

    Smaller agencies might avoid layoffs.

    The Department on Aging, for example, would eliminate one position thanks to a vacancy in a part-time position and an upcoming retirement. Earlier this year, three positions were already eliminated, Director John McCalley said this morning.

    There would be no layoffs at the Treasurer’s Office, either, Treasurer Michael Fitzgerald said this morning.

    Fitzgerald’s plan is to eliminate one full-time position, which is currently vacant anyway. He would also request that the remaining 27 employees voluntarily take reduced hours.

    But at other agencies, the loss will be far more severe – partly because certain federal funds hinge on a match in state spending.

    The 10 percent cut for the state’s largest agency, the Department of Human Services, equates to a $145 million general fund reduction, DHS financial staff said.

    But the loss is really $388 million. That’s because the missing state money will result in a loss of $243 million in federal money.

    Culver asked department heads to turn in their proposals by close of business Tuesday.

    Culver has stressed that the are tentative. He will review them and share a final plan by next Wednesday. Layoffs are expected.

    All the job losses are tied to Culver’s Oct. 8 order for a 10 percent across-the-board cut. Shrinking state tax revenues forced the extremely deep cut, which totals $565 million.

    The cuts are effective immediately for the budget year that began July 1 and ends June 30.

    The union that represents more than 13,000 state workers received the layoff plans this morning.

    “At this time, AFSCME Iowa Council 61 is still reviewing the plans released by the governor’s office this morning for layoffs in state agencies,” union spokesman Charlie Wishman said. “We want to reiterate our expectation that going forward, the state of Iowa should treat this current situation the same as it would a major plant closing, and provide all appropriate support to workers who are being laid off that is available to them.

    “As AFSCME is a democratic organization, we will not be issuing further comment until such time as the leadership of this Council can meet with our State Bargaining Committee and our Members to discuss these matters further.”

    All this budget cutting is happening because tax revenues are plummeting, but the Iowa Constitution requires that the state budget be balanced.

    The latest official estimate of tax collections and fees projected that the state will get $415 million less than expected when lawmakers passed their budget last spring. That threw the state budget out of balance.

    Culver chose to cut more than $415 million in spending. He went with $565 million, saying he wanted to leave the state a cushion of extra money as officials prepare next year’s budget.

    Raising taxes would bring in more money, but Culver said he won’t do that because Iowans are already dealing with a severe recession.

    “I believe now is not the time to raise taxes on hard-working Iowans,” he said Oct. 8.

    The budget cuts mean that no government office that gets money from the state’s general fund will be spared.

    At 9 p.m. last night, Culver and Lt. Gov. Patty Judge were still working with senior staff members at Capitol, reviewing the department directors’ plans.

    “It is important to note that these are ‘preliminary plans,’ and I will be working with department directors, labor leaders and collective bargaining units to finalize the plans by Wednesday, October 28,” Culver said in a written statement.

    “My goal is to keep our budget balanced while doing all we can to preserve essential services for children, seniors, and public safety,” he said.
    Last edited by Iowa #1603; 10-21-2009, 04:40 PM.
    Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

    My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

  • #2
    You should see the shortage that the inept TDCJ is faced with... I'm glad I'm still on the street.
    Education ... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading.
    - G. M. Trevelyan

    B.S. Business Administration - Texas A&M 1990
    MPA - University of Texas Dallas 2004
    Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice - American Military University 2006
    Graduate Certificate in Accounting - University of Dallas 2008
    Various Graduate Credits - UoP
    MA Christian Ministry Chaplaincy Dallas Baptist University 20%
    DPA Valdosta State 30%

    Comment


    • #3
      Forgive me. but just some more..."Change we can believe in".

      Comment


      • #4
        "Hope and Change" defined: "I hope I will be able to run this country after I have changed the way things have run for over two hundred years!"

        How is that working out for you, Comrade?
        Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

        [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

        Comment


        • #5
          damn brothers. My best wishes to Iowa COs.

          Here's a way to save money - get the lifers and high risk inmates on a chain gang and have them start mowing the highways and picking up litter and moving piles of rocks - all the jobs that require 20$ an hour salaries and fancy equipment can be done by 20 inmates armed with shovels, making nothing, and five COs armed with shotguns and another five with tasers.

          Bring back the old days - want to build a road? Call the prison. That saves ALOT of money.

          Back to the OT - - good luck, guys.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by SgtCHP View Post
            "Hope and Change" defined: "I hope I will be able to run this country after I have changed the way things have run for over two hundred years!"

            How is that working out for you, Comrade?
            According to CNN, not so well...
            Education ... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading.
            - G. M. Trevelyan

            B.S. Business Administration - Texas A&M 1990
            MPA - University of Texas Dallas 2004
            Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice - American Military University 2006
            Graduate Certificate in Accounting - University of Dallas 2008
            Various Graduate Credits - UoP
            MA Christian Ministry Chaplaincy Dallas Baptist University 20%
            DPA Valdosta State 30%

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by YankeeWhite View Post
              damn brothers. My best wishes to Iowa COs.

              Here's a way to save money - get the lifers and high risk inmates on a chain gang and have them start mowing the highways and picking up litter and moving piles of rocks - all the jobs that require 20$ an hour salaries and fancy equipment can be done by 20 inmates armed with shovels, making nothing, and five COs armed with shotguns and another five with tasers.

              Bring back the old days - want to build a road? Call the prison. That saves ALOT of money.

              Back to the OT - - good luck, guys.
              That's still being done in Texas, to a certain extent. Mainly it's around the prisons.
              Education ... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading.
              - G. M. Trevelyan

              B.S. Business Administration - Texas A&M 1990
              MPA - University of Texas Dallas 2004
              Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice - American Military University 2006
              Graduate Certificate in Accounting - University of Dallas 2008
              Various Graduate Credits - UoP
              MA Christian Ministry Chaplaincy Dallas Baptist University 20%
              DPA Valdosta State 30%

              Comment


              • #8
                Really rough times for Iowa ahead.....
                'Evil always wins when Good does nothing'-Anonymous

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by YankeeWhite View Post
                  damn brothers. My best wishes to Iowa COs.

                  Here's a way to save money - get the lifers and high risk inmates on a chain gang and have them start mowing the highways and picking up litter and moving piles of rocks - all the jobs that require 20$ an hour salaries and fancy equipment can be done by 20 inmates armed with shovels, making nothing, and five COs armed with shotguns and another five with tasers.

                  Bring back the old days - want to build a road? Call the prison. That saves ALOT of money.

                  Back to the OT - - good luck, guys.
                  Great idea!! But don't forget, we're living in Hillary's Village. Inmates working? Heaven forbid!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    We tried Chain Gangs back in the late 90"s.

                    VERY labor (Officer) intensive..............(in order to do it safely) If you are using high risk prisoners.
                    The department was ordered to do it by the legislature...............inside of 2 yrs we proved that is cost way too much to continue the project.


                    Thanks for all the kind responses.................we are gong to need prayers on this one folks
                    Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

                    My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Budget Cuts


                      Why are "public safety" and "education" the places where the politicians claim that they have to cut services?


                      Seems to me that there are more than enough 'professional bureaucrats' whose jobs should probably have been eradicated a long, long time ago.

                      I suppose it is just another way that they can hold taxpayers over the barrel by scaring us into coughing up more of our hard-earned paychecks year after year.

                      The comments above reflect my personal opinion as a private citizen, ordinary motorist and all-around good guy.

                      The aforementioned advice should not be construed to represent any type of professional opinion, legal counsel or other type of instruction with regard to traffic laws, judicial proceedings or official agency policy.

                      ------------------------------------------------

                      "Ignorance on fire is hotter than knowledge on ice."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wow, Iowa sounds like it is doing worse than Kansas.

                        Here are some suggestions to cut costs in the prison system. (I should add this will also make our prisons very dangerous places)

                        -Cut CO pay down to $8 an hour.
                        -Turn those tiny 2 man cells into 4 man cells. That way there can be less prisons open.
                        -End all inmate medical care.
                        -Fire all employees at the Iowa Department of Transportation, and replace them with inmate chain gangs.
                        -Offer to take all Guantanamo prisoners, and any other prisoners that anyone else will dump on you.
                        -Every Friday have a 'NO POWER' day.
                        -Replace all inmate meals with gruel and water.
                        -Offer early release to all those with life sentences, as long as they promise to move out of Iowa
                        -Change Iowa laws to make drug dealing, assault, murder, and armed robbery legal
                        Those who believe, ye shall receive.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          HHAH - jay is funny.

                          Back in the state where I worked...a while ago...they used inmates for alot of road work. Were able to reduce DOT significantly. Trustee inmates (a few years and under) were entrusted with more challanging tasks and those requiring equipment and such, thus utilizing their skills.

                          Those that were high risk were simply chained together and told to pick up trash, move rocks, etc. Those that refuse or acted out were capstunned and given some automatic hole time. The more inmates worked, the more tired they were when they got back to prison, and the less problems were had inside, because they were sleeping. The only thing that had to be done was up the food supply since they wanted them to work, and work well.

                          Other ideas for monetary cuts

                          Make all state politicians (governors, mayors, councilmen, senators, and such) earn minimum wage. Let them see how their constituents live.

                          Eliminate take-home car program for state police/patrol. (sorry guys, im a cop too, but we all have POVs and large spaychecks. Guess we have to use them)

                          Increase seizure of property related to drugs and criminal cases. All property used wiht be appropriate by the state and re-sold to the public. I mean more than the once-yearly auction now. If caught with drugs in the car, seize the car. Everytime, not sometime or over x-amount.

                          Execute all pople on death row. Not ten years from now. Now.

                          Eliminate drug rehab programs. Drug addicts arent diseased, their criminals. Throw them in brightly lit cells and make them quit. Clears it right up.

                          Eliminate/reduce inmate health care. There is no reason why we have fifty dollar copays and theirs are fifty cents. (notice the trend here - prison system=money void)

                          Stop settling cases when sued. The State has sovereign immunity and therefore cannot be sued without giving permission to the complainant. Simple - stop giving permission. period.

                          Fire people who don't work. How often have we driven by work zoens three or four times in a shift and every time those guys are sitting there, on a break, or waiting for something. Work or leave - simply policy.


                          those are my suggestions. BTW - my dept is hiring if any Iowa DPS/Justice/Prison guys want to move. Come be a (quasi) Federal Police Officer for the USAF!!! (/advertisement)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I thought same sex marriage was going to fix everything.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Iowa # 1603

                              You say 435 people at your facility and they want to eliminate 80? Just curious how many convicts do you house and what level facility are we talking?

                              Comment

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