The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

August 29, 2011
A.M. Reading: Pension positions; Mich. pay cuts blocked; Ct. cracks down on OT; Ohio's private prison fight

Thumbnail image for newspaper_5.gifViewpoints: Pension changes can't wait
When the Legislature approved the 2011-12 state budget in June, commentators declared pension reform dead for the year, a missed opportunity for California. Including pension reform as part of budget negotiations would have been expedient, but the budget was not the only chance to address an issue that will continue to dominate the policy agenda. Bipartisan pension legislation is not only possible, it must happen this year. (Sacramento Bee)

Mich. court: 3% pay cut for state workers by Granholm, Legislature is illegal
State government employees won a key -- but possibly fleeting -- victory Friday as the Court of Appeals decided a budget-balancing move to dock their pay 3% to cover retiree health care benefits was unconstitutional. (Detroit Free Press)

Editorial: Pension reform again eludes state
The appetite for public employee pension reform, which seemed so voracious just a few months ago, appears to have evaporated among many state legislators. (Sacramento Bee)

Steven Greenhut: Pension funds should get real on rate of return
SACRAMENTO - When the taxpayer is backing up the entire liability for the pensions received by members of the California Public Employees Retirement System, then CalPERS officials are exuberant about the stock market. They insist that a predicted rate of return of 7.75 percent is perfectly realistic. (Orange County Register)

State worker salaries are a sad reflection of our priorities
What does it say to young people today when the list of the state's highest paid government employees is topped by a University of Washington football coach who makes $1.98 million a year? Number two on the list, the university's basketball coach who makes $1.14 million. (The Olympian)

Republican Politicians Banned From Labor Day Parade In Wisconsin
WASHINGTON -- A group of Wisconsin union officials has voted to ban Republican politicians from a local Labor Day parade, underscoring how partisan the state has become in the wake of this year's clashes over collective bargaining rights. (Huffington Post)

Malloy orders crackdown on state overtime costs
HARTFORD -- State workers made $911 million in overtime pay in the last four years, including more than $230 million last year. Now, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is ordering agency heads to cut down on overtime costs. While he is not setting specific targets or limits, the governor's budget director says an overall reduction of 10 percent is achievable. (Waterbury Republican-American)

Trooper, prison layoffs hint battle for control
As Governor Malloy lays off state troopers and prison supervisors in unions that rejected the pay freeze he sought, maybe the governor at last has had enough of collective bargaining with state government employees. (

AFL-CIO official backs prison suit
MARION - An advocacy group's lawsuit attempting to block the governor's plan to privatize six Ohio prisons, including two in Marion County, is well-founded, a local labor official said. (Marion Star)

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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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