Sonny Perdue aides begin the process of ‘burrowing in’

Over at Georgia Report, Tom Crawford addresses a familiar cycle of life:

One of the surest signs that a governor’s administration is nearing the end is when the chief executive starts appointing his aides and supporters to well-paid positions in the government bureaucracy.

Political scientists call the process “burrowing in” and you will see it going on at the federal level when a president nears the end of his term in office and tries to shelter his people by placing them in regular government positions.

Gov. Sonny Perdue, whose administration will end in January, has been taking care of his people for several months now.

Heidi Green, who was one of Perdue’s policy advisers early in his administration, was named commissioner of the Department of Economic Development in June, a $140,000-a-year job formerly held by Ken Stewart.

Last Friday, Perdue appointed Green’s husband, Cobb County attorney Reuben Green, to replace Ken Nix when he steps down in October from his $120,000-a-year position as a Superior Court judge.

Perdue recently named his chief financial officer, Tommy Hills, as state treasurer, a job that pays $157,000 a year. Hills replaces Dan Ebersole, who is retiring as of the end of August.

The governor’s personal adviser on transportation issues, Jannine Miller, was named executive director of the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority in July (her predecessor, former BellSouth executive Dick Anderson, was being paid $140,000 a year).

Erin Hames, the former middle school teacher who was Perdue’s policy director until last week, is in line to get a healthy bump in pay from the new job she got as chief of staff at the Department of Education.

Hames was paid $63,558 in fiscal year 2009 as a policy adviser to the governor. In her new position at DOE she replaces Stephen Pruitt, whose salary was $118,145.

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44 comments Add your comment

Base

August 30th, 2010
3:19 pm

The hogs have their noses in the trough.

Lone Star

August 30th, 2010
3:26 pm

Same old crap at the end of every administration. I can guarantee that all the Georgians currently unemployed will rejoice that political lackeys will be earning big bucks at the taxpayers’ expense.

the Cobb

August 30th, 2010
3:32 pm

Meet the NEW BOSS, same as the OLD BOSS

qwerty

August 30th, 2010
3:32 pm

So, where are all those “small government” Rebubbacans who scream about bloated government employees’ salaries now? Tea partiers, isn’t this supposed to be what you’re against? How about Fair Taxers? Isn’t this the stuff you guys hate? And yet, these supposed “grassroots” sham artists will sit silent because these are Rebubbacan appointees. I’d bet good money that none of these appointed people has so much as a drop of talent for which the private sector would offer a salaried job.

David

August 30th, 2010
3:36 pm

As long as I don’t have to see that Bert Brantley ever again, things will be all right.

Indian feller

August 30th, 2010
3:44 pm

Politicians are smelly as buffalo dung in the wind.

James

August 30th, 2010
3:46 pm

Qwerty… sshhhh….No one is suppose to know they LOVE BIG Gov’ment too. Kinda reminds me of the silence when Bush ran up the deficit and fed Wall Street huge sums of cash. We ain’t s’pose to notice. LOSERS!!!!!

Usmc Dawg

August 30th, 2010
3:58 pm

Funny Jim, I guess the Dems don’t do this either. I never read your article on this same issue when the Dems appoint people to cushy jobs in the government.

I guess your bias against Republicans has always been pretty obvious. Maybe that is why your readership keeps going down every year.

Just saying…

Lone Star

August 30th, 2010
4:00 pm

qwerty: “So, where are all those “small government” Rebubbacans who scream about bloated government employees’ salaries now?”

I have already posted re this absurdity, and as I said, “Same old crap . . .”

Bobby Kahn

August 30th, 2010
4:01 pm

Never fear – all Repub appointees are DOA when King Roy and I take over come January.

Daniel

August 30th, 2010
4:02 pm

I would love to know the number, name and salary amounts of every position/office the Governor can give an appointment to.

qwerty

August 30th, 2010
4:19 pm

@Daniel now, THAT is a great question. Someone should do a Freedom of Info request for exactly how many vacant positions the governor can fill on his way out the door (including the title, salary, benefits and required skills for each position). Hey, ajc, that would be some REAL investigative journalism.

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
4:27 pm

LOL. The only defense the small government/Tea Party types have is the kiddie pool argument, “They do it too,” and “The AJC is biased.”

Whatever happened to the big brave talk like, “‘Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!’” or “Take back the government?”

The Tea Party has to be the most inept “grass roots/billionaire financed” political organization ever!

Retreat! Hide the ammunition!

ga female

August 30th, 2010
4:31 pm

The Cobb County Judge, deal, with Pat Head, Judge Nix replacement; replacement of Pat Head’s wife is the most sick. Where is Sally Yates and the FBI. Who is going to expose Sonny and Nathan Deal. This all stinks.

Of Course Glenn Richardson had another one of his drama calls to 911 and transports to the hospital, when the ethics investigation, started to reveal he was moving his campaign cash to personal use.

Lets lock them all up.

Retired Soldier

August 30th, 2010
4:37 pm

Dannyx-

Point well taken and you are correct us cinservatives should be holding Perdue’s feet to the fire. As far as the “Tea Party has to be the most inept….” Show mw an instance when a new grass roots movement defeated at least 2 incumbent senators in a primary and has won several others, i.e. Ky, NV and Colo, FL. I would say they have been very successful.

Retired Soldier

August 30th, 2010
4:38 pm

catlady

August 30th, 2010
4:56 pm

Burrowing in like a tick, lice, scabies, or a bedbug.

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
4:56 pm

“Ky, NV and Colo, FL. I would say they have been very successful.”

Why because they won their primaries? The fact that each and every one of those candidates has greatly moderated their views recently speaks volumes. Paul and Angle had to go into hiding. They had to completely repackage their message and change their views to give them a chance at being elected.

What a movement. They should reload, and call themselves the Bowel Movement. Wipe away their past. Flush the original message. The diarrhea of the mouth has done them in.

catlady

August 30th, 2010
4:59 pm

Retired Soldier

August 30th, 2010
5:06 pm

Dannyx-

Success is measured by wins and the Tea Party has produced. Again, name a grass roots movement that successful that quickly. Of course a candidate moderates their talking points from the primary to the general election, it’s called winning elections.

Did Obama change from the primary w/ Clinton to the general election w/ McCain? Of course he did. Obama ran to the left of Clinton and ran back to the center for the general. If he had not done that he would have lost.

You ought to be fair here. Don’t like the the Tea Party, no problem. But me thinks you are really scared of what they have accomplished.

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
5:17 pm

There is no movement Retired Soldier. There is no Tea Party. There are a lot of sore losers that suddenly became outraged at all the things that caused the problems in an attempt to not take responsibility.

Georgia, where a large number of Tea Party members reside just nominated Nathan Deal as the Republican nominee for governor. The same politician that voted for the 100 billion farm subsidies. He voted for Medicare part D, without funding it. He voted for the unfunded wars. He voted for tax cuts at a time of greatly increased spending. He voted for the creation of The Dept of Homeland Security, more big government without funding. He voted for head start and he voted for NCLB.

There is no Tea Party movement. Its a figment of your imagination. It gives people cover to justify their misplaced anger. Its fake.

Allen

August 30th, 2010
5:24 pm

Would not the new superintendent of education name his own chief of staff? This has to be a very short term job at best.

The Snark

August 30th, 2010
5:38 pm

Retired Soldier: Defeating people in a primary (if indeed they did) is not much of an accomplishment. The thing that bothers me about the Tea Party is that anger and resentment — justified or not justified — don’t amount to a plan for governance. They’re pretty good at expressing what they’re against, but when it comes to what they’re “for,” it seems to be nothing but vague generalities. And when power is seized by angry people with nothing to guide them but generalities, the bad guys slip in and have a field day.

You Asked

August 30th, 2010
5:40 pm

Tommy Hills was already working for State Governrment and the previous state treasurer retired. Don’t forget the pertinant details Jim. Besides anyone in the executive branch serves at the pleasure of the next Governor anyway. Lots of Perdue appointees have jumped to private sector jobs too. Perhaps we’re better off draining away all the experience in state government each four years and starting over with amateur political appointees with no experience? This article is much ado about nothing.

Advocate for Georgia Children

August 30th, 2010
5:46 pm

The Governor did the same thing a little while ago when he took his wife’s young assistant and put her in charge of a newly merged state agency. This young woman with almost no experience got a huge pay raise and is in charge of policy that effects countless children. I’m sure they hope nobody paid attention to this.

Retired Soldier

August 30th, 2010
5:48 pm

Danny x-

Keep on believing and has the liberals are swept from office you will be entitled to say…boy I never saw that coming.

Snark-winning a senate primary is no big deal? Wow, what is a big deal then? Has Obama governed as he ran? No, now it is someone elses turn. Not all republicans are conservatives, almost all democrats are liberals. Many of us now want to try the conservative side.

SAME STUFF

August 30th, 2010
5:57 pm

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
6:15 pm

I see big gains for the Republican Party in November Retired Soldier. I don’t see big gains for the Tea Party. The fact that Paul and Angle have remade their position on everything is a big loss for the Tea Party. In fact it is the independent voter, as usual, that will determine the outcome. The Tea Party impostors were always going to vote Republican. The Tea Party impostors will support candidates like Nathan Deal of Georgia proving that their movement is all myth.

flagger

August 30th, 2010
6:16 pm

Danny x- U r so full of crap ure eyes r brown….
as long as bums like u get something for nothing it don’t matter if the
country goes down the toilet… does it?

n

August 30th, 2010
6:35 pm

Sonny the “free market guy” plants his folks in high paying government jobs.
Hypocrisy, thy name is Republican.

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
6:36 pm

Going down the toilet indeed flagger. For instance, Republicans in Alaska just nominated a Tea Party member for the Senate.

This is a prime example of the Tea Party myth. Alaska is the welfare queen of US tax dollars. They gobble up US tax dollars. They get more US tax dollars per capita then any other state by far. They are addicted to their entitlement.

When asked if Alaska would give up their place at trough the Tea Party/Republican candidate said NO! Another Tea Party phony flushing their Bowel Movement Party ideals down the toilet.

There is a brown cloudy haze in the water you Tea Party members are drinking and it aint from tea leaves.

Lone Star

August 30th, 2010
7:20 pm

DannyX:
“Alaska is the welfare queen of US tax dollars. They gobble up US tax dollars. They get more US tax dollars per capita then any other state by far. They are addicted to their entitlement.”

Please cite your source for this information?

Port O'John

August 30th, 2010
8:41 pm

Its only “burrowing in” when democrats do it. When its Republicans, its really a self-sacrifice for the public good. They really don’t want to take those jobs at twice their pay and thrice their competency level, but their belief in giving back to the public compels them to take the job.

DannyX

August 30th, 2010
8:42 pm

“Please cite your source for this information?”

Do just a basic search Lone Star and you will find thousands of articles on the issue. Literally thousands! Its common knowledge.

Like this “”The place with highest federal tax allotments per capita is Washington, D.C., with $65,109. The state with the second-highest federal tax allotments per capita is Alaska with $13,950. The state with the third-highest federal tax allotments per capita is Virginia $16,610. The state with the fourth-highest federal tax allotments per capita is Maryland with $11,956. The state with the fifth-highest federal tax allotments per capita is New Mexico with $10,733.”"

Of course DC is not a state, so what I said is correct. Guess what state received the most stimulus dollars per capita Lone Star? Yep, Alaska.

Here’s one for you Lone Star, From Scripps Howard news service,

“”On a per-capita basis, Alaska is by far the largest recipient of federal money. It gets almost $6 back for every $1 its people pay in taxes. Federal tax dollars support a third of the state’s jobs. It leads the nation in earmarks — a fancy name for pork-barrel spending — at $506 per capita. The state’s Republican politicians may deride President Obama’s stimulus spending, but Alaska happily led the nation in the amount per resident of stimulus money accepted — $3,145. “”

Read more: http://www.sentinelandenterprise.com/editorial/ci_15938874#ixzz0y8ghYm3d

A THIRD of Alaska’s jobs are funded by the US taxpayer! You see that Lone Star. Another example of the phony Tea Party movement. Alaska the leader in earmarks, stimulus, and US tax dollars received. And not one of them wants to give that up!

Mr. Grumpy

August 30th, 2010
11:18 pm

What will happen if Barnes wins is what the Bobby Kahn pretender @ 4:01 PM said. Their appointments are short-lived. Even if Deal is elected (God forbid), there’s no guarantee he’ll keep any of Perdue’s people on board. As for Tommy Hills, he’s hated by most retired state employees who know he did everything thing in his power to destroy their pensions — even though he collects a nice, fat retirement from Bank of America which is where he retired from when Perdue hired him back in 2002.

You Republicans buy all that crap your politicians feed you about smaller government, but they’re the first ones to take care of their friends at your expense. You people are suckers and deserve to be plucked.

CommonSenser

August 31st, 2010
6:16 am

I thought our governments (federal, state and local) were working on such tight financial budgets? Doesn’t sound like it to this Georgia taxpayers!
How each government entity can waste so much money on so few servants while the rest of us are scraping by is beyond reason!

Double Zero Eight

August 31st, 2010
7:39 am

No one is surprised. Sonny is a hypocrite. He has gotten his piece of the pie with the land he purchased near Disney World in Floirda,which
required special legislation. He had a highway steered out of its way
in his home County of Houston, which will increase the value of nearby land. Sonny is just paying his debts to his cronies.

Mr. Grumpy

August 31st, 2010
7:59 am

Double Zero Eight has it right. Folks who thought they were getting a new deal when they elected Sonny Perdue as Governor got played like suckers. Electing him was like letting the fox guard the hen house for the past 8 years. He’s done everything he can do to take care of his friends and himself…at Georgia taxpayers’ expense. You’ll get the same result with Nathan Deal. Just ask Karen Handel if she’d trust Nathan Deal to watch out for Georgia taxpayers.

Base

August 31st, 2010
9:22 am

Good reason to vote for Barnes so he can whack them.

Mr. Grumpy

August 31st, 2010
11:50 am

Base — Absolutely !!!

kindergarden math

August 31st, 2010
3:41 pm

He also fired Molly Perry, Executive Director of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, so that he could appoint one of his budget minions to that $119,653 per year job, effective tomorow. Of course, the next Governor can appoint his own person to that position, which makes the timing curious. Does Karen Handel get one before Sonny leaves, or is that fix in with Deal ?

John Galt

August 31st, 2010
4:30 pm

Look for the new Guvna, whoever he may be, to clean house, especially of such as Hill. Most all of these appointments will be for six months.

Black Bart, the alleged “Revenue Commissioner” under George Perdue, should especially be cleaning up his resume. I hear the TSA is hiring.

PHD

September 1st, 2010
2:47 pm

I also hope that “David” never lays eyes on Bert Brantley again. David does not deserve that privilege! And……Bert deserves so much more for the job that he has done. Maybe he will land in the private sector with 500K.

middler and so tired of all the rhetoric :

September 1st, 2010
5:02 pm

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