Home » Opinion » Editorials
Governors & contracts: Legislators don't get a veto
Gov. John Lynch this week vetoed House Bill 1666, which would have required legislative approval of all collective bargaining agreements between the state and public employees. As tempting as the bill sounds, Lynch's concerns were well-founded.
The bill stated that “every collective bargaining agreement entered into by the state shall be approved by the fiscal committee of the general court before each takes effect.” That would not simply give legislators a small role to play in contract approvals. It would give the fiscal committee a veto over contracts negotiated by the governor.
Not only is that an intrusion into the authority of the executive branch, but it would needlessly and enormously complicate labor negotiations.
Lynch was right to point out in his veto message how long and arduous contract negotiations are. A governor and his team spend months crafting contracts that contain dozens of individually negotiated items.
Under HB 1666, after a deal is reached the fiscal committee would then essentially reopen the contract. It could object to any item, big or small, and every objection would have to be renegotiated. It would prolong contract negotiations for months or longer and undermine the governor's negotiating authority. Any union whose leaders thought they could get more favorable treatment from the fiscal committee would refuse to compromise with the governor.
The trick to getting better contracts with state employee unions is not to dilute the governor's authority. It is to elect governors who are better negotiators.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Disengaged: Obama's lousy excuse - 14
- Underestimating NH: Gun control picks two wrong targets - 22
- Roaming jihadis: A terrorist visits Manchester - 3
- Athletes and PE: Give them credit for sports - 7
- The EPA's friend: It has a loyal ally in Shea-Porter - 16
- Leading vs. following: Ayotte, Shaheen and the polls - 24
- The cupcake police: Stop! In the name of lard! - 15
- Page One Editorial: Obama is right - 27
- Taxed tips: Another NH revenue grab - 9
READER COMMENTS: 1
- Updated: Man fatally shot on Manchester street; neighbors shocked - 3
- Nashua mayor to recommend Bennett for corporation counsel - 0
- Claremont group disputes incinerator plant's permit - 0
- Goffstown artisan gives new face to Wolfeboro tower - 0
- Katie McQuaid's Scene in Manchester: Kiwanis and the kids - 0
- Town may have to fix grave error - 0
- Gate City Musings: Mayor just keeps on spending - 0
- Nashua set to begin budget review - 0
- Manchester 'homeless meter' program seeks to deter panhandling - 0
Volunteer drivers needed in Windham
North Country ATV trail opening on schedule
UNH hires firm to redesign one of its logos
Disengaged: Obama's lousy excuse
Chechen decries Boston attack
43 killers on lifetime parole - but where?