January 27, 2010

One Way to Shrink Government

Justin Katz

Anybody catch this little nugget?

A one-time chief of staff to former Senate President Joseph A. Montalbano, [Former state Sen. Edward] Morrone has spent the last year as the $94,100 "director of intergovernmental affairs" in the office of Montalbano's successor: M. Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport.

In recent days, Superior Court Presiding Judge Alice B. Gibney nominated Morrone to replace David E. Perry, who retired in December, as clerk of the Kent County Superior Court. Morrone's current salary includes a 10 percent longevity bonus. Even with that bonus, it appears the court post -- advertised at $66,177 to $74,996 - would result in a pay cut for Morrone, who worked in the courts once before as the first manager of the Adult Drug Court.

Why does a part-time legislature require a full-time "director of intergovernmental affairs"? And why should the position pay so well?

More importantly, the career of Mr. Morrone is one more indication of the importance of a viable second party. If particular seats, including the senate presidency, were to change political hands from time to time, it might dislodge patronage careerists.

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Nice catch, the state house if full of people cashing in on the backs of working Rhode Islanders.

Posted by: michael at January 27, 2010 3:25 PM

Why does Paiva-Weed need a driver AND a body guard?

Why does Fox need a "personal Attorney".

Why did Monatlabano need a Chief of Staff AND a Deputy Chief of Staff (Hoyos)?

Any wonder we're broke?

We get the government we deserve!!!

Posted by: Aldo at January 27, 2010 3:45 PM

Sorry for the "fat fingers".

It should have read Montalbano...

Posted by: Aldo at January 27, 2010 3:46 PM

>>Why does Paiva-Weed need a driver AND a body guard?

A guard to hold off angry taxpayers long enough for her to flee in her chauffer driven car.

>>Why does Fox need a "personal Attorney".

To keep reassuring him that the statute of limitations is past on the $400k he got from GTech.

Posted by: Ralph at January 27, 2010 3:59 PM

"Why does Paiva-Weed need a driver AND a body guard?"

I'd reformulate the question by replacing the word "AND" with the word "OR."

Is she somehow physically disabled and cannot work the pedals or steering wheel of the car by herself?

Who specifically are they worried about harming her, and how many attempts have been thwarted so far?

Systemic elitism and waste.

Posted by: Dan at January 27, 2010 5:52 PM

Why is there any need for a Director of Intergovernmental Affairs at all?

About the need for a viable second party; George Washington,who used to be called the father of our country (I don't know if he still is generally known as that),took a dim view of political parties. He thought they were very destructive to a government of free people.

Posted by: helen at January 28, 2010 6:36 PM

"Director of Intergovernmental Affairs"

Oh him, that's the guy who carries the bills that the muni-unions write all the way over to the speaker. Afterwards, he carries whatever isn't being thoroughly and diligently studied to the governor's office to get vetoed. Finally, he has to carry them all the way back to the speaker again for the override.

Seriously, it's a tough job. You wear through a whole set of fancy shoes every October. Nobody would do that kind of work for under $90K. Plus, if he wasn't keeping an eye on all those bills, the "Senior Green Resource Reclamation Engineer" might accidentally recycle them.

(Just kidding, I have no idea what this person does. I suspect that the house and senate leadership keep so many people around so they can have multiple sets of ears/eyes/mouths/arms to keep everyone 'on task')

Posted by: mangeek at January 29, 2010 1:03 AM

The sad thing is that I can imagine your scenario as true,mangeek,right down to the "Senior Green Resource Reclamation Engineer". Although I have no idea what such a person as a Director of Intergovenmental Affairs does either. It doesn't sound quite Constitutional or responsible to me.

It seems those we trust to represent us and carry on the business of our state just find ever more ways to constrict our lives with more wasteful spending.

Posted by: helen at January 30, 2010 12:24 AM
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