Union to Paterson: No to Contract Renegotiations, Yes to More Employees

ALBANY—A major public employees union put a dollar amount on what it says could be saved by using state workers instead of private contractors: about $100 million this coming fiscal year and a total of $730 million in three years.

PEF President Ken Brynien unveiled a 34-page report, which details a claim he made during the special legislative session (and before).

“It’s a way to save a lot of money,” Brynien said. Not coincidentally, it would also facilitate the creation of more state employees who would potentially become PEF members.

When asked if he thought it would lead to more hiring, Brynien said “It could. But when you’re hiring people at 65 percent of the consultant’s cost, even though you’re hiring more people you’re saving money.”

David Paterson, who is seeking to bridge a budget deficit next year that could run as high as $15 billion next year, has rhetorically asked any and all to come forward with cost-savings measures. Before the special session, he asked PEF and other unions to re-open their contracts and forgo a 3 percent raise this year, as well as delaying a week’s worth of pay – moves the unions rebuffed.

Union to Paterson: No to Contract Renegotiations, Yes to More Employees