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Senate Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: April 6, 2015 11:52 AM
From: Senator Mike Folmer
To: All Senate members
Subject: IFO Analyses of Collective Bargaining Agreements
The magnitude of the costs associated with the Commonwealth’s collective bargaining agreements was highlighted during the recent Appropriations Committee hearings:
  • Fourteen of the contracts expire the end of June and total over $3 Billion in costs
  • These contracts cover 44,584 state employees (of 72,176 under the Governor’s jurisdiction)
  • Four other contracts expire in 2016 and 2017 and total over $1.5 Billion
The impacts of these agreements will significantly impact the 2015 – 2016 state budget and future budgets: paying state employees, covering health care, and funding pensions in particular.

To better prepare for these impacts, I will be introducing legislation to empower the Independent Fiscal Office to provide cost analyses for the current and subsequent fiscal years of the impacts of each proposed agreement prior to execution. The IFO analyses would assess the costs to cover public employee wages, benefits, pensions, and working conditions.

The Governor would be required to give the IFO two weeks’ notice of pending contracts so the IFO has time to prepare these analyses prior to the execution of each collective bargaining agreement.

The General Assembly – and the public at large – need to know how the costs of labor agreements will impact the Commonwealth’s ability to be fiscally responsible in passing a truly balanced budget. The information I’m seeking would provide these much needed insights.

I hope you will join me in sponsoring this important measure

Introduced as SB644