The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

February 16, 2010
Steinberg furlough bill passes committee 5-0

A bill that would end furloughs for many state workers cleared the Senate Public Employment and Retirement Committee this afternoon on a 5-0 vote.

The measure, SBX8 29 by Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, gained the support of the lone Republican who voted, Dave Cox of Fair Oaks.

The bill would exempt from furloughs any departments that receive 95 percent or more of their money from sources outside the general fund. Last week Steinberg's Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes issued a report -- some would say a politically motivated document -- that found furloughs at the Franchise Tax Board and budget cuts at the Board of Equalization are costing more in revenue collection than they're saving in payroll costs.

Click here
for our blog post about the Oversight and Outcomes report.

After today's hearing, Steinberg told The State Worker that Cox's vote showed that his bill can be sold to both sides of the aisle.

"You can vote for this if you care about the impact (of furloughs) on working people," Steinberg said, "or you can vote for it if you care about the state's bottom line."

The measure could come up for a Senate floor vote on Thursday.

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at


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