Arnold Wins Court Battle To Furlough California State Workers

As most of us are aware, California has been handling a difficult budget crisis, which at times has put the golden state some $20B in debt. In an effort to slow the bleeding of revenues, the governor of the state, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has taken the painful steps of furloughing state employees. But the states 200,000 workers were no happy campers and filed a lawsuit to stop the furloughs and sued for back pay. The state Supreme Court has ruled in the governators decision and has ruled the furloughs as legal.

In a recent article it also stated that:

The governor imposed 46 furlough days through June 30, reducing payroll costs by about $3 billion. He imposed another round of them in August to save money as the state budget impasse lingered.

Employees sued to block the measure, and Supreme Court heard oral arguments last month.

“We’re very disappointed by today’s ruling,” said Patty Velez, an environmental scientist at the Department of Fish & Game and president of the California Association of Professional Scientists. “The furlough program may have satisfied the governor’s need to inflict financial pain on the state work force, but we now know it did little to save money for California taxpayers.”

Schwarzenegger issued a statement saying the furloughs were “difficult decisions” he had to make to keep the state afloat. “Today’s ruling upholds the state’s actions to protect taxpayers and ensure we live within our means, just like every California family and business must do,” he said.

That is a novel approach of having any local, state or federal government to live within their means. It is unfortunate that we have reached a point in which governmental issues spend money like a drunken sailor on shore leave. Though I do understand the feelings of the state employees and the resentment they feel, what do they expect the governor to do? It is also unfortunate the California legislature doesn’t have the guts to address the state’s budget crisis and chooses to continue to ignore the problem.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Source – The Sacramento Bee

Article Written by

I have been writing for Lockergnome for eight years.

  • the oracle

    All of the current problems could have been avoided if the “slush fund” set up during the term of Jerry Brown the first time around had been allowed to be used only for budget shortages, as it was originally intended.

    Unfortunately, one of the Republican governors following him decided that re-allocation of that money for something else was a better move.

    It wasn’t.

    Of course, during the “reign” of Pete Wilson, I remember the cuts in services, and the increases in fees, and the lowering of some taxes. The Republicans I knew loved this, but it seemed to affect anyone going to college (as I was) more than the older generation. It also affected families starting out, which was not good.

    I think Arnold has been between a rock and a hard place through his entire tenure, and really is not to blame, but then, I did not vote for him, basically because I knew Gray Davis was in that same area, of a rock and a hard place.

    I know the state needs some big changes, but the thing I keep asking myself is, where do those that scream about things that are paid for with taxes, like roads, schools, police and fire services, think the money is coming from? It truly has always seemed to me that the Republicans in this state were a bunch of whiny babies that wanted many things for the price of nothing.

    • Ron Schenone

      Gee, I voted for Arnie the first time around because I thought Gray Davis, had the brain of a gnat. :-)
      His administration got the state into ridiculous contracts for electric power that was akin to highway robbery.
      I agree that Arnie has had one hand tied behind his back during his entire 8 years of service.
      Maybe ‘moon beam’ can bail the state out of their financial dilemma. LOL

  • ShadowMyth

    Well, you know what I think, but a good band-aid would be to legalize pot and save the state by taxing it.
    They have done the same thing to city workers where I live.

    • Ron Schenone

      Hi ShawdowMyth,
      It is ludicrous spending the money we do to stop people from smoking pot. I like the idea about taxing sales. :-)

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