The rapidly approaching 2014 legislative session – not 2015 – will be the time to take up any controversial proposals.
The 2015 session will be in an election year. In election years, legislators and the governor only want to deal with feel-good issues – the type of proposals that guarantee votes.
For instance, if state revenue collections continue to improve, legislators should be able to provide pay raises to school teachers and state employees in 2015.
Legislators have traditionally gone through all sorts of contortions to ensure election-year pay raises. After all, kindergarten through 12th-grade teachers, state employees and university faculty make up a sizable voting block – about 90,000 people.