In Video, State Employee Dreams of a Different Peter Shumlin | Off Message

In Video, State Employee Dreams of a Different Peter Shumlin


A frame from the VSEA's "A State Employee Can Dream..." video - SCREENSHOT
  • Screenshot
  • A frame from the VSEA's "A State Employee Can Dream..." video
Gov. Peter Shumlin is appearing in Dave Bellini's dreams.

Bellini likes what he hears — the governor pledging to stand up for state workers — until he wakes up and realizes the dream was too good to be true.

That's the gist of a new Vermont State Employees Association video featuring Bellini, a Department of Corrections worker and union activist. It was posted to YouTube early this week and is featured on the VSEA's website and Facebook page.

The video is the latest step in the union's effort to counteract Shumlin's proposal to cut $10.8 million from state personnel costs by reopening the union's year-old contract. If it doesn't, Shumlin has told the union, he'll lay off up to 325 workers. Seven Days wrote about the governor's disintegrating relationship with the state's public sector labor unions in this week's issue.

The video makes use of footage from a 2010 meeting between Shumlin, then a candidate for governor, and the VSEA. At the time, then-governor Jim Douglas had recently pushed steep job cuts to the state workforce.

"I've never seen such a demoralized workforce," Shumlin says in the 2010 remarks. "I don't blame you for being demoralized. And when they lay off 400 state workers, they celebrate. I will put an end to that era. No more cuts ... I'm here to tell you that I've been saying consistently, we can't deliver the services Vermonters expect with the employees we have right now. How could we possibly say we're going to cut more?"   

In the video, Bellini then awakens.

"I knew that was too good to be true," he says.

Watch the video here:

Speaking of Gov. Peter Shumlin, Vermont State Employees Association


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