Inquiring minds just might be asking “How Much Are State Furlough Programs Helping States Balance Budgets?”
Given the angst created by the furlough programs, one would hope the furloughs programs are helping states a great deal. Sadly, that is not the case at all. Please consider Furloughs cut into state services.
States Turn To Employee Furloughs
More than 728,500 employees in at least 21 states have taken or will soon be forced to take furloughs, or unpaid days off. Some states have implemented furloughs statewide, while others allow agencies to implement them as needed.
California: 238,000 employees, $1.3 billion savings, 34 furlough days over 18 months
Colorado: $16 million savings, 4 furlough days over a year
Connecticut: 50,000 employees, $700 million savings, 7 days over two years
Hawaii: 15,000 employees, $688 million savings, 72 days over two years
Idaho: More than 5,000 employees, $11.6 million savings, 4 to 10 days over a year
Maryland: 67,000 employees, $34 million savings, 2 to 5 days over a year
Massachusetts: 5,000 employees, $4.5 million savings, 3 to 5 days over a year
Maine: 7,000 employees, $10 million savings, 20 days over two years
Michigan: 37,400 employees, $22 million savings, 6 days over a year
Nevada: $333 million savings, 12 days over a year
New Jersey: 60,000 employees, $300 million savings, 12 days over two years
North Carolina: $65 million savings, 10 hours over a year
Ohio: At least 51,000 employees, $173.2 million savings, 20 days over two years
Oklahoma: 470 employees, $1.2 million savings, 12 days over a year
South Carolina: 24,000 employees, $30 million savings, up to 10 days over a year
Wisconsin: 69,000 employees, $121 million savings, 16 days over two years
Those were the states with projected benefits. Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Oregon, and Utah have furlough programs but have not projected benefits.
In addition, Illinois, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and Washington are considering possible furloughs.
California: $1.3 Billion
15 Others: $2.5 Billion
Putting Things Into Perspective
The California budget deficit is $26 billion now and counting. Shortfalls are rising every day as is interest on IOUs. California could fire all 200,000+ state workers on forced furloughs and still not balance its budget!
In aggregate, 728,500 employees furloughs are a drop in the bucket towards solving state budget problems. Massive programs need to be cut and pension benefits must be brought under control.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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