California state furlough information from the SacBee:
"Furlough announcement rattles many California state workers"
"State offices will shut two Fridays a month"
"Sacramento businesses brace for furloughed worker's absence"
Meanwhile, SEIU Local 1000 is already going to court to have the furlough and layoffs stopped.
Furloughs vs. Shutdown
When the furloughs were first announced, there was some confusion over whether they would be rotating furloughs, where employees would have to take two days per month off, but offices would stay open, or whether state offices would shut down entirely.
Personally, I agree with the shut down plan.
Shutting down an office entirely will save a lot more money than just the salaries of the employees for those two days.
Furloughs vs. Layoffs
I know that a lot of people are going to be hurt by the 10% income loss.
I'm not trying to say that it won't hurt or that it won't push a lot of families dangerously close to the edge.
Hell, it's not like state work pays that well to begin with.
I also know that part of the Executive Order was an order to initiate layoffs. It's unclear what percentage of staff will be laid off, but the order directed the least senior 20% to be placed on an SROA list. How many of those will actually end up laid off nobody knows at this point.
While furloughs are across the board, layoffs do not apply for special fund agencies - any agency that makes the majority of its own money. (I am extremely fortunate to work for a special fund agency.)
So, even though layoffs are, supposedly, on the horizon, it is nowhere near as bad as it looks, or as bad as it could be.
Frankly, it could be so much worse.
For one thing, it could be like many other companies in California and across the nation that are laying off large percentages of workers, or just plain closing up shop completely (sometimes, though, they're nice enough to tell their employees first).
For another thing, we're coming very close to a point where it would not be unlikely that state workers get paid in IOU's instead of cash money paychecks.
The union can scoff and gripe and go to court all it wants to, but if there is no money, there is no money.
I don't know about the rest of you, but my family can survive on 10% less a hell of a lot better than it can survive on an IOU. Even if Golden1 floats us the amount on loan until I get an actual paycheck.
Furloughs vs. the Economy
The truth that the people in charge seem not to notice or take seriously is that everything touches and affects everything else. State workers play a huge part in the Californian economy, especially in Sacramento.
So what will furloughs affect?
They are going to reduce spending, probably significantly, especially in the downtown Sacramento area.
You can expect that there will be downtown restaurants closing. Many of them get the bulk of their business during the lunch rush, or happy hour/dinner meetings. As state workers scale back spending, lunches out will probably be the first thing to go.
The "frivolous" expenditures will be the first to go. Movies, books, eating out, specialty coffee drinks, gym memberships.
Yes, this will affect business in the Sacramento region.
Also, it's going to affect sales tax revenue. Which means there will be less income for state and local governments.
So, yes... reducing the income of state workers reduces the amount of money that the state is paying out. But it also reduces the amount of money that state workers are spending, thus reducing the amount of money that the state (and counties and cities) is earning through taxes.
I have no idea how to figure out if the cut in output is worth the cut in income, but I'm sure there's a point at which they balance out. I think someone had better figure out what that point is before we get to it.
SEIU, stop going to court over every little thing. Are you serious? Do you have any idea how much money that costs both you and the state?
And so help me if you come to me for a dues increase when, in the last seven years, you haven't kept my medical from increasing and I've only gotten one cost of living increase.
You will have one pissed off fat dyke up your ass faster than you can say "Never mind!"