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By Claudette Montoya

We are all very aware of the budget crisis the State of New Mexico New Mexico, state in the SW United States. At its northwestern corner are the so-called Four Corners, where Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah meet at right angles; New Mexico is also bordered by Oklahoma (NE), Texas (E, S), and Mexico (S).  is having. The special session seemed to have divided the governor and Legislature even more, rather that produce ideas to fix the budget. I believe there is plenty of blame to go around as to how we got to where we are, but is that going to fix the budget? Playing the victim or pointing fingers, no matter how dramatically it is done, is not going to fix the budget.

We do not ask to be treated better than any other citizens of the state, but by the same token, we do not want to be treated worse. All we ask is to be treated fairly, with respect, and dignity in the workplace. We will do our part and work hard to serve the citizens of this state.

What we do expect from our politicians is leadership. We need a voice of reason with the willingness to compromise to get us through this crisis. We are all in this together, and we are willing to share in the sacrifice and do our part to get out of this budget crisis. Leaders are found and judged by how they perform in times of crisis, so hopefully a true leader will rise to the top to lead us out of this mess.

However painful it may be, we need Gov. Bill Richardson This article or section contains information about one or more candidates in an upcoming or ongoing election.
Content may change as the election approaches.
 and the Legislature not to spare any sacred cows from cuts. Cuts and revenue increases must go hand and hand. State employees have already been hit with cuts and will probably get hit again. The regular classified employees are already picking up the extra work duties of the vacant positions that were frozen. The only positions that I have seen being filled are the ones in upper management. The number of employees in non-managerial positions has not increased in the last 10 years, so that shows that state employees have been operating at a steady affordable level. What has dramatically increased is the number of managers.

I was very happy to see that Lt. Gov. Diane Denish Diane D. Denish (born March 3, 1949) is the Lieutenant Governor of New Mexico, the first woman to hold that post. She was first elected in 2003, running on the same ticket as current Governor Bill Richardson.  has come out publicly stating she will put an end to double dipping Double Dipping

For brokerage firms, when a broker puts commissioned products into a fee-based account. The broker makes money from both the client and the commission.

There is more than one meaning for the term depending on the context.
, the system through which retired employees come back to work, receiving both salaries and retirement. I would ask her to go a little go further and publicly state she will reduce the number of exempt employees that would work under her if she were elected governor. We have seen an increase of exempt employees in the last decade.

The state employees have great ideas for cutting expenses. One idea that stands out is reducing paper and files. We live an era of technology. We have statutes that are overdue OVERDUE. A bill, note, bond or other contract, for the payment of money at a particular day, when not paid upon the day, is overdue.
     2. The indorsement of a note or bill overdue, is equivalent to drawing a new bill payable at sight. 2 Conn. 419; 18 Pick.
 for change. We need to start to move to electronic files and records, but we need to change record retention schedules along with the need for hard-files statutes.

I am sure if state employees were asked by every agency to identify cost-savings measures, the state would see not only a short-term savings but huge long-term savings. I encourage everyone to participate in helping save money and cut waste because in reality, we could be wasting our jobs away. We all need to approach this crisis with a shared-sacrifice mentality men·tal·i·ty
The sum of a person's intellectual capabilities or endowment.

Claudette Montoya is a Local 477 executive board member for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Union. She lives in Santa Fe.
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Title Annotation:Editorials
Publication:The Santa Fe New Mexican (Santa Fe, NM)
Date:Nov 15, 2009

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