OVERWHELMING MAJORITY SAID THEY WISH TO REMAIN IN SERVICE
While a handful of Democrat lawmakers and outgoing Gov. Bill Walker strenuously and publicly objected to the incoming Dunleavy Administration’s request for resignation letters from at-will employees, the employees themselves seem to get it.
Of the 800 who received the letter from Dunleavy’s Chief of Staff Tuckerman Babcock, roughly 650 have already responded by Thursday evening — they sent in their requested resignations and also indicated they would love to continue to serve in the Dunleavy Administration.
Only a handful said that they are leaving for other opportunities, according to sources in the Dunleavy Transition Team.
In other words, 81 percent of the “exempt” class of workers have already completed the required assignment, and the deadline isn’t until close of business on Friday.
Most of these workers will probably be retained, but only if they’ve told the new boss they want to stay. If they resign without having stated their druthers, they’ll probably be rotated out the door.
Some have already found other work. In the politically sensitive jobs, there will be legislative aide positions opening up this month. Some in the inner circle of Gov. Bill Walker will make the jump to those jobs while the pickings are good.
For instance, Gov. Bill Walker’s legislative director, Darwin Peterson, has reportedly already landed a job as an aide to Sen. Click Bishop.
The governor’s deputy press secretary’s last day was Monday. She hit the road because she’s clearly not in line with the new adminstration.
The state of Alaska’s first Chief Information Officer, in the Office of Information Technology, left in September. Bill Walker’s Director of Public Engagement, who was formerly a photographer for Vice President Joe Biden, is also gone.
One state worker, the director of psychiatry at the Alaska Psychiatric Institute, made a public display of his distain for the process, and wrote a letter to the editor of the Anchorage Daily News, saying he refuses to resign.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy is sworn into office on Monday at 11:55 a.m. Employees who are in the at-will category will then wait to see if their letters of resignation are accepted, a process that could take days or weeks.
The State of Alaska has about 16,300 full time employees. Most are members of bargaining units, rather than at-will employees.