Albany, NY – Paterson To Cut 100,000 State Workers for 1 Day a Week

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    Albany, NY – New York Governor David Paterson said his next emergency spending bill will furlough 100,000 state workers for one day a week to help keep the government operating in the absence of a budget.

    The furloughs, which would save about $30 million a week, come after the Democratic governor’s decision to withhold a 4 percent pay increase from about 130,000 state employees since April 1. Both measures are intended to reduce outlays while New York lawmakers debate a $9.2 billion deficit for the year that began April 1.

    “I have decided I will include the furloughs in the next week’s emergency appropriations,” Paterson, 55, said at a press conference today in Albany, the capital. “Collective sacrifice is preferable to individual layoffs.”

    The governor of the third-largest state by population said public employee unions brought on the furloughs by spurning other measures that would save $250 million. As long as the state lacks a budget, the unions’ contracts aren’t binding, Paterson has said. The unions have said they’ll go to court.

    Leaders of the Senate and the Assembly, both Democrats, disagree on a plan to close the budget gap, leaving Paterson to propose weekly spending bills that lawmakers can’t amend or replace with their own. Neither chamber’s spending plan called for spending cuts as large as the $6.1 billion Paterson has proposed.

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    18 COMMENTS

    1. Whats the bid deal. Its only one day a week and the state is broke and has no other way to raise the money to pay these people. Further, think of how much additional money we will save for each day these bureaucrats never get to the office to waste our tax dollar. Thus, we save even more.

      • These sacrifices are not being asked of the bureaucrats. It’s being demanded of (mostly) people who make 20-40 thousand dollars a year, the people who actually do the work. What will you say when it takes 20% longer to fix a bridge, pave a road, get a license or registration, or take a bus or train?

        • That’s actually YOUR obligation – to vote for a COMPETENT candidate. If you can’t even do that, and keep on voting for whomever buys the most TV ads, don’t go around complaining about them not working.

          If Paterson was running again, he would definitely get my vote. He is the only sane man in the corridors of Albany.

          • The bureaucrats are not the ones who are voted into office—-they are the ones who are appointed by the elected officials. Most of the political appointees make over $150,000 a year and are doing very little—yet their secretaries, the guys in the mailroom, and the janitors are asked to sacrifice their pitiful salaries, not the big guys. While people in NYC won’t feel the pinch, those of us upstate know that the 20% cut in state worker salaries represents a huge chunk of the local budgets.

            Patterson was never elected to this office. He has been part of the political machine his whole life (as son of Basil Patterson), and now is getting millions of dollars from the Wal-Mart family, among other special interests.

    2. The employees have a contract with the State and he can’t legally furlough employees without their consent. He can furlough the Senate and Assembly members since they don’t have a contract.

      • The contract is meaningless if there is no money to pay the employees. If they want, the state can declare bankruptcy, reject the contracts and pension fund obligations entirely and ask the court to impose new contract terms. Once and for all these public sector employees need to feel the pain the rest of us feel.

        • Bankrupcy may void the contracts, but our State penions are guaranteed under the NY State consitution. Let them void all those high cost contracts with the overpriced politicaly connected consultants.

      • The legislature can do whatever it likes. It can amend or abrogate the contract, and what are you going to do about it? A state can’t be sued without its consent.

    3. As a state employee i disagree with most of your comments. i am not a bureacrat but a hard working parent trying to pay his bills like the rest of you. don’t believe that every one who works for the government have it easy. a one day a week furlough blows a big hole in my already stretched budget.

    4. This is just a way to squeeze the unions to pressure the legislators to act. Since he’s declared he’s not running he’s not cornered by any union and can make logical decisions.
      New York needs to break the unions. Gov’t employees are making large salaries with huge benefit packages while the rest of us suffer under increased taxes and other revenue generating schemes.

      • Guess what? The $28,000 dollar a year state clerk is also paying taxes and suffering from the same revenue generating schemes. He or she is taking a 20% tax cut but the real waste— the appointees and consultants Patterson put in by the thousands who make huge money aren’t losing a penny. He exempted them from the furloughs!

    5. Not all of us make 6 figure salaries. I live paycheck to paycheck just like everyone else. Why doesn’t everyone stop knocking union workers. EVERYONE can take a civil service exam but chose not to. Look at our elected officials, who make 3x what i make and can’t even put a budget together.

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