Burns proposes ‘fair chance’ legislation for government jobs

Bill would require all state jobs to be posted publicly

HARRISBURG, Sept. 28 – Continuing his efforts to push good-government reforms in Harrisburg, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, has introduced legislation that would require all state jobs to be posted publicly on a statewide public employment website, ensuring transparency and openness in the hiring process.

“Thankfully, we are far removed from the days when political patronage and cronyism ruled the halls of Harrisburg and state jobs were doled out as rewards, but there remains work to be done as we continue to professionalize the state workforce,” Burns said. “We need to make sure taxpayers are getting value from every dollar – and that means hiring the best people we can. To do that, we need to make sure people know about, and can apply for, these jobs.”

Burns noted that under the current system, while many entry-level positions are posted online, many higher-level positions are not and are filled internally.

“The public deserves a chance to apply for taxpayer-funded jobs,” Burns said. “By posting every opening online, we can ensure that these positions are staffed with the most qualified candidates.”

Since taking office Burns has fought for openness and transparency in government, both in Harrisburg and at home. He fought all the way to the state Supreme Court – and won – to unseal Liquor Control Board records, and his efforts locally brought to light the Vision 2025 plan to settle refugees in Johnstown without public input or knowledge.

Burns’ bill, H.B. 2834, has been referred to the House State Government Committee for review.