Culver Preempts Branstad By Inking Pay Raise With Iowa Union

Iowa Governor Chet Culver sewed up an agreement Friday with the state's largest union of public employees, a move that essentially locks in $200 million in additional salaries before Culver's successor, Republican Terry Branstad, takes office. According to The Des Moines Register , the deal would give the state workers a 2 percent pay hike in July and another 1 percent bump six months later. They would get the same pay boosts the following year, too. A Branstad spokesman told the paper the contract was "reckless." Branstad, a former governor, campaigned on making public employees pay health premiums.
Rick Scott, governor-elect in Florida , has kept a low-profile in Tallahassee since winning election, but his 86-member transition team gives some insights on how he plans to govern, the Miami Herald writes. Scott has hired a New York search firm to fill state positions with candidates who have private-sector experience. His team also includes conservative economists and members of his former hospital chain, the paper reports. Alan Levine , a hospital executive who served in Florida government under Jeb Bush and Louisiana government under Bobby Jindal, is on board.
Incoming California governor Jerry Brown has been talking about not having a chief of staff, but it is likely that someone will have to fill that role, The Sacramento Bee writes. " For a governor of the nation's most populous state, it is almost unavoidable," the Bee says. There are just too many details and decisions to take care of for the governor to operate without one, several government insiders told the paper. Brown has not yet decided how to organize his top advisors — including whether to have a chief of staff. But he has said that flattening the organizational structure would add "a little more humility" to the governor's office.
The governor-elect of Connecticut, Dan Malloy, already named his chief of staff, Tim Bannon. Bannon told the Connecticut Post  he did not hesitate when Malloy made the offer. "I didn't have to shilly-shally much in responding to that," he told the paper. Bannon is a former lawyer for a pharmaceutical company and an insurance company. He also served as head of the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority.


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