Even if state employees grab their second chance at ratifying a $1.6 billion concessions package, they might not be acting soon enough to reverse some of the damage already being wrought by the governor’s layoffs/cuts.
Take, for example, the Connecticut Technical High School System, which faces cuts in arts and athletics.
Because the unions failed to ratify the givebacks in June, Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy has been moving full steam ahead with alternative plans to cut $1.6 billion from the new two-year budget.
The unions have succeeded in scheduling another round of voting which some expect to conclude in mid-August with a more positive outcome.
Patricia Ciccone, the technical system’s superintendent, said the conundrum for her is that rival schools and state athletic groups/conferences need to begin putting together their fall game schedules now.
“You have to inform them if you’re not going to be able to field a team (to) allow them to try to put other schools into their schedule,” Ciccone said. “And we have to show we don’t have a program so our kids are eligible to play for the hometown high school in districts in which they live.”
Ciccone said while the other schools/sports groups have said they will try to wait until the very last minute i.e. until after the union vote, some cannot.
So even if state workers wind up okaying the $1.6 billion deal next month and Malloy reverses the layoffs/cuts, it may be too late for technical school students who play fall sports.
“We certainly could pick up winter and spring, but it’s iffy in terms of fall,” Ciccone said.