the visible hand

it is the theory which decides what can be observed – einstein

The Terminator terminates state employees

Posted by ecoshift on July 31, 2008

Governor orders layoffs, steep pay cuts for thousands of state workers
Matthew Yi, Chronicle Sacramento Bureau
Thursday, July 31, 2008

(07-31) 12:38 PDT SACRAMENTO — Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, one month into a state budget impasse, today ordered the layoffs of thousands of state workers and steep pay cuts for most other state employees in an effort to save cash as California faces a multibillion-dollar budget deficit.

The state has been without a budget since the current fiscal year began July 1, while the governor and the Democrat-controlled Legislature work to come up with a spending plan to fill a $17.2 billion gap that would include $2 billion in reserves.

“Today I am exercising my executive authority to avoid a full-blown crisis and keep our state moving forward,” said the governor, whose move was expected after The Chronicle and other news outlets obtained a copy of the order last week. “This is not an action I take lightly, but we do not have a budget, and as governor, I have a responsibility to make sure our state has enough money to pay its bills.”

Cutting the pay of about 200,000 state workers to the federal minium wage of $6.55 an hour would save California as much as $1.2 billion a month, the governor’s office said. Such workers would get regular pay plus back pay once a new budget is approved.

The layoffs of nearly 22,000 temporary, seasonal and student workers would save the state as much as $28.5 million a month, the governor’s office added. It is not clear whether workers laid off would be rehired when a new budget is enacted.

Slashing state worker pay will likely face a legal challenge from state Controller John Chiang, who has the responsibility to disburse pay checks, saying he will not go along with the governor….

The state’s revenues have plummeted in recent months as a result of declining home sales and prices.

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