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Not what she said

Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, had questions when legislative budget writers were reviewing budget requests from the state’s public health districts. Among them: Why, when an employee retires, they get credit only for half of their unused sick leave, rather than all of it. Some people, he said, will “take a sick day just to take a day off. … Seems like you’re penalizing the person that’s really working hard and loyal to the company, and the other ones are getting rewarded for it.”

House Appropriations Chairman Maxine Bell, R-Jerome, responded, “They’re following, probably, the state guidelines?”

That was the answer. Carol Moehrle, 2nd District Health director, responded that when employees retire, they can convert half of their unused sick leave into health benefits. “They don’t get paid out,” she explained. “It’s the same for all state employees.”

Harwood said, “Then what you’re saying is we need to change that, huh?”

“No, she didn’t say that,” Bell said to laughter.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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