I just did a blog post yesterday about the couple of hundred million the Obama administration is "saving" while spending trillions, and I did an editorial about the $8 billion set aside for high-speed-rail development. Today comes the news that more billions are being spent to save police jobs across the country. So when a story like this comes along, my first reaction is: Why is the state making such a big fuss over peanuts?
A judge ruled Tuesday that the state of Indiana owes thousands of current and former employees a total of $42.4 million for 20 years of back pay.
Judge John Hanley issued the ruling Tuesday in Marion Superior Court in Indianapolis. A spokesman for the attorney general said an appeal is likely.
The judgment was based on estimates that up to 15,000 state employees worked 40-hour weeks from 1973 to 1993 but received the same pay as others in similar jobs who worked only 37.5 hours.
But $42.4 million is a big deal to a state our size in the middle of a recession, and the thousands or even hundreds of dollars each employee gets is an even bigger deal. Governments waste billions. Real people watch dimes and quarters (I was about to say pennies, but, you know, inflation).
A spokesman for the state attorney general's offce said an appeal is likely, but why drag out a losing cause? The judge noted in his ruling that the state spends approximately $38 million per day every day of the year. Just shut the state down for a couple of days, and there'll even be money left over. We all win.