Stim Engine Falters

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Dear Patrick Administration PR Dream Team:

The tried-and-true Friday night information dump (alias PAFNDAS) has been tried and tried, and is now tired. Please note: it really pisses reporters off.

Sunday, January 31, Exhibit A. Somehow that jobs-related press release did not work out so well.

Saturday, February 2, Exhibit B.

Suggestion to the Guv’s talented staff, when people are really hurting, you need to use real numbers and show seriousness of purpose. Here are just a few problems with the stim numbers you’re using:

– The 14,000 number far overstates the impact by including lots of p-t work, and also by using the federal money to pay small portions of state salaries, and calling those jobs “retained.” That’s not, uh, serious.
– Public sector jobs ARE important, BUT focusing 70% of the stim money on government jobs does not have the ripple effects in the economy that private sector jobs do.
– Public sector jobs are important, but the state is setting us up for a financial cliff once the federal money dries up. That is especially so on the education side. Using so much federal stim money to fill a huge hole you drilled in state education funding in FY09 is setting up perhaps an unscalable cliff. This is not in the spirit of a 1993 SJC ruling, state law, and some would argue violates a constitutional duty.

The opportunity to do something big and enduring — whether as regards infrastructure or inner city clean-ups — has been lost. That is truly a pity.