The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

August 25, 2011
A.M. Reading: Furloughs vs. layoffs; N.Y. pension costs increase; R.I. pensions

Thumbnail image for newspaper_5.gifThe State Worker: Furloughs end, but layoffs remain a possibility
First, the good news for state workers: Next month about 25,000 of you return to steady full hours and full pay for the first time in 31 months. Now the bad: Layoffs are coming - the real kind, where real people go to the unemployment line. (Sacramento Bee)

Jerry Brown to propose new corporate tax package
Gov. Jerry Brown will ask lawmakers today to tighten a corporate tax formula in exchange for giving manufacturers a sales tax exemption and offering enhanced job tax credits, according to legislative sources. (Sacramento Bee)

Transparency in government pensions: GASB details proposed changes to pension reporting
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board is proposing one of the most substantial overhauls of pension reporting since the existing standards were implemented in 1994. Among the new rules are adjustments to the methods which governments use to report pension costs, obligations, and unfunded liabilities. (Public CEO)

State Workers Approve Contract
SALEM, Ore. - Members of Oregon's largest public workers' union have approved a new two-year contract. It's the first time state workers have agreed to pay a portion of their health insurance premiums. (KLCC)

Some public employees' health bills may grow
Many Michigan public school and local government employees will have to cover more of the cost of their health insurance under legislation sent to Gov. Rick Snyder on Wednesday. (Detroit Free Press)

Pension costs for state and local governments to jump 16 percent
ALBANY -- Pension costs for state and local governments in 2013 are set to rise 16 percent to cover public employees and jump 19 percent to fund police and fire workers, Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli announced Wednesday. (Democrat and Chronicle)

Now governor wants to bargain
Wonders never cease. Ohio Gov. Kasich now wants to bargain with Ohio's public employees. Coming after 1.3 million voters signed petitions to require a vote on his infamous Senate Bill 5, which intends to strip employees of their bargaining power, it's ironic that he now sees the virtue of negotiating. (Athens News)

Editorial: CSEA faces reality
State government recently reached an important accord that drew little notice. The largest union representing state workers, the Civil Service Employees Association, ratified a contract freezing base wages for three years, followed by 2 percent annual raises in the contract's last two years. The deal would also provide employees with lump-sum retention payments of $775 in 2013 and $225 in 2014. Workers will have to take nine unpaid days off and pay more for their health insurance.Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo expects the new contract to save$73 million in the current fiscal year. (Buffalo News)

R.I. schedules 3 pension reform hearings for September
PROVIDENCE -- Setting the stage for a special session on pension reform this fall, the leaders of the General Assembly have scheduled a Sept. 6 briefing for lawmakers on the breadth of the $9.4-billion funding problem, followed by series of House and Senate Finance Committee hearings on three successive Wednesdays in September. (Providence Journal)

Taxpayers funding benefits for big-company, government retirees
WASHINGTON - Greater Cincinnati employers - including large companies and local governments - are getting millions of taxpayer dollars to help pay for health care benefits for early retirees, people who are often at risk of losing health care until they qualify for Medicare. (Cincinnati.com)

To see our vast archive of searchable A.M. Reading headlines, go to Publish2 Fun across a news story of interest to state employees to share? E-mail the link to jortiz@sacbee.com.

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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 jortiz@sacbee.com.

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