Thursday, July 12, 2012

Message to State Workers: You Can Work From Home Tomorrow

That’s right. If you want to work from home, go ahead and do it.

Huh? How can that be?

This is a new New York State policy. In fact, it’s been in place for several months now and none other than the State’s top ethics official is following it already.

That’s right. Ellen Biben is the executive director of the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JJOKE). Her official work station at her time of hiring was Albany. That’s where all her staff was based. But not her.

No, for her first three months on the job she was working from an undisclosed location in New York City. In fact, she rarely showed up in the Albany office. And when she did report to the office, she probably charged the state for her travel, lodging and meals.

Now I know what you’re thinking: “I can’t do that. If I don’t feel like going into the office, I can’t say I’m working from home today. I can’t work from the beach. And I certainly can’t charge the state for my expenses of reporting to the office when I do go in.”

Oh, but you can! The state’s top ethics official has set the precedent. Just follow her example.

Oh, and by the way, the JJOKE commissioners all know about this arrangement, and they haven’t objected.  In fact I’m hearing rumors that JJOKE chairwomen Janet DiFiore secretly authorized Bibens absence.

And if the JJOKE commissioners know that means their appointing agencies, the Governor and the Legislative leaders also know and haven’t objected.

Sooooo, guess what?

What’s good for Ms. Biben must be good for everyone else.

State workers, one and all, this means you can work from home tomorrow, or anywhere else you want. Enjoy.


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