State Senator Kevin Witkos’ Comment on the Layoff of 56 State Troopers

August 23, 2011

State Senator Kevin Witkos (R-8): “Governor Malloy’s decision to layoff 56 rookie troopers is nothing more than a spoiled kid tactic.

“The governor himself said that nearly $4 million has been invested to train these young troopers. But because members voted against a two year wage freeze, after already coping with a freeze under Governor Rell, they now face layoffs. This is an absolute waste of trained professionals and now an even larger waste of millions of taxpayer dollars and state investment.

“Worse, state statute dictates a minimum number of state police officers, and the agency is already well below the minimum operating level of 1,248 due to retirees and a hiring freeze. These layoffs come at a dangerous time; crime in our state’s cities is up, the state’s buddy system is being leaned on too heavily, and our troopers are the only officers that can cross municipal lines to investigate misdemeanors and patrol state highways. Fewer troopers on the job and more work will also mean that taxpayers will be digesting the increased costs of overtime. Where are the savings?

“Connecticut, and more specifically the Governor, should not be in the habit of using bullying tactics because our troopers did not support the entire concession package.”