The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

June 28, 2011
A.M. Reading: Plan B budget; CalPERS' $11 million bill; Nev. workers exit

Thumbnail image for newspaper_5.gifBudget deal by Brown, Dems scraps tax election, may trigger cuts
Gov. Jerry Brown relinquished a cornerstone of his budget plan Monday by forfeiting a 2011 tax election and securing a deal with Democratic lawmakers that shortens the school year if tax revenues fall short of optimistic projections. After months of seeking GOP votes, Brown decided four days before the new fiscal year that a bipartisan deal was impossible. The Democratic governor wanted Republicans to pass a temporary extension of higher sales and vehicle taxes as a "bridge" to a fall election, but Senate Republicans would not vote for taxes. (Sacramento Bee)

GASB's Robert Attmore discusses new pension rules
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board is poised to approve new regulations that will have a major impact on the way states calculate their pension liabilities. The changes are meant to make it easier to compare the health of pension funds from one state to the next. They also would have the side effect of making states' long-term finances appear in worse shape than their current balance sheets indicate.

CalPERS' $11-million legal bill raises eyebrows
Reporting from Sacramento-- The California Public Employees' Retirement System paid $11 million to a Washington, D.C., law firm and its advisors to conduct an internal review, an amount that has some of the fund's own directors proposing more stringent oversight of outside legal fees. (Los Angeles Times)

David Crane Op-Ed: Key to pension costs is realistic assumptions
Recently I wrote that culpability for rising pension costs lies with pension fund officials and politicians, not public employees or Wall Street. That conclusion surprised some because conventional wisdom is that pension problems started only after pensions were increased and the stock market crashed in 2008. But pension costs started rising before 2008 and would have risen even without those increases. (Sacramento Bee)

Legislature gives Oregon University System freedom from agency status
The Oregon University System's quest for more independence and freedom from state regulations cleared its final major hurdle Monday with approval by the House. Senate Bill 242 would end the state agency status of Oregon's seven public universities, giving them more freedom in how they manage, spend and raise money. (Statesman-Journal)

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal signs legislation affecting state workers; medals for veterans
BATON ROUGE - Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed into law legislation that will expand the types of state workers who can be eligible for death benefits when killed in the line of duty. (

Many state employees retiring or seeking greener pastures
CARSON CITY -- Guy Rocha retired as Nevada archivist two years ago, after 32 years with the state. While he could have worked much longer, he said he didn't want to preside over the dismantling of his agency. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

More budget talks but no deal
Edging ever closer to a government shutdown, state leaders met Monday for a fourth straight day of closed-door talks in an effort to solve Minnesota's budget dilemma. While the two sides appeared cordial and upbeat, ominous signs surfaced. (Star-Tribune)

State employees nervously anticipate shutdown, layoffs
St. Paul, Minn. -- As it grows more likely that most state employees could be laid off, many are growing increasingly anxious. (Minnesota Public Radio)

House debates lack of Oregon PERS reform this session
A pair of PERS bills prompted sharp criticism from House Republicans this morning, who accused the Oregon Legislature of not acting on the "systemic and chronic issue" represented by the state's pension system. (Statesman Journal)

McKenna to Inslee: Don't risk pension money
Attorney General Rob McKenna renounced attacks on his gubernatorial foes on Monday, but then strongly took issue with a proposal made earlier in the day by Democratic hopeful Rep. Jay Inslee. (

Layoffs loom in Connecticut, New York
The new working number for pending layoffs in Connecticut is 7,500. That is enough lost jobs to bump the state's overall unemployment rate up from 9.1 percent to 9.4 percent, reports the Connecticut Mirror. (

Net cost of state-worker contracts: $164 million
HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Tentative contracts covering 55,000 state employees would cost taxpayers an additional $164 million over four years. (Associated Press /

No raises appear to be in the cards for management and non-union employees in Pa. state workforce
The two large state worker unions apparently won't be the only ones coping with a pay freeze for the next year. Apparently, the 13,600 management and non-union employees won't see a raise either. (

Pennsylvania Unions Reach Agreement
It's a plan that's responsible to Pennsylvania taxpayers and meets state worker needs outlined in Governor Corbett's 2012 budget.
That's what Secretary of Administartion Kelly Powell Logan says of the tentative 4-year labor agreements, reached by 2 unions in the Keystone state last week. (WBNG)

For links to more news, views and video, check out The State Worker's Individurls page. To see our vast archive of searchable A.M. Reading headlines, go to Publish2.

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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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