Stimulus is running out and states will cut employees whether they want to or not. Some job seekers on Craigslist are willing to do anything. In New York, “fine print” has delayed many needed cutbacks.

When Stimulus Runs Out

CNN Money discusses the Latest unemployed: Stimulus-subsidized workers

Tens of thousands of low-income workers lost their jobs Thursday as a stimulus-subsidized employment program came to an end.

About a quarter of a million people in 37 states were placed in short-term jobs thanks to a $5 billion boost to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. States used about $1 billion to provide subsidized employment, with the remaining funds going to cash grants, food programs, housing assistance and other aid.

With the program expiring, many of the adults have been told not to report to work anymore. And it won’t be easy for them to find a new position at time when the unemployment rate continues to hover at 9.6%

“They are just joining the millions of other people looking for permanent work,” said Elizabeth Lower-Basch, senior policy analyst at the Center for Law and Social Policy, an advocacy group known as CLASP.

1,200 NASA workers to be laid off

CNN Reports 1,200 NASA workers to be laid off

More than 1,200 NASA workers will be laid off Friday, despite Congress passing a $19 billion budget for the space agency two days earlier. Lori Garver, NASA’s deputy administrator, said Thursday she didn’t believe the bill would affect planned layoffs, “certainly not for tomorrow.”

Thursday was the last day for laid-off employees to report to their workstations. Shuttle workers on their last day were to receive their final paperwork. Many of the departing workers have worked on the shuttle program since its beginning in the early 1980s.

Tough to Get Rid of Unwanted Bureaucrats

The Times Union reports State layoffs offering trial by fine print

Word of impending layoffs sent shock waves and more than a little anger throughout the state work force Friday after Gov. David Paterson told state agencies they could lay off up to 2,000 people by the end of the year in order to achieve savings targets.

But if and when people actually start getting pink slips, the process is likely to cause a lot of headaches and maybe a bit of head scratching too.

That’s because the layoff process for public employees in New York is so complicated, convoluted and potentially case-specific that it will likely take a large cadre of lawyers, civil service experts and others to manage.

“The big print giveth and the little print taketh away,” said Harvey Randall, a Capitol Region lawyer who serves as a consultant on public-sector layoff issues.

Randall co-authored a book on the various rules and procedures that govern layoffs.

It runs more than 600 pages, which should disavow anyone of the idea that layoffs are a simple matter. Generally, state and most public-sector layoffs are done by reverse order of seniority and that’s true with the state.

But it’s important to realize that the seniority is generally limited to job titles within what is known as a “layoff unit.” Some of the units can run across state agency lines. For example, a clerk in the Department of Environmental Conservation could conceivably “bump” or displace a less-senior person in, say the Department of Health, although that depends on the labor contract and precise job title involved.

Also, job titles from which people are being laid off generally have to be abolished, but that doesn’t stop cross-agency bumping.

For example, if a printer’s job is being eliminated in one agency, that printer might be able to go across town and bump a less-senior printer somewhere else.

It gets even more complicated in agencies involved in direct care such as the Department of Corrections or Office for People With Developmental Disabilities, where layoffs can proceed based on facilities. Even then, people targeted for layoff would generally have the option to bump someone in another facility such as a prison or home for the disabled, but it could be halfway across the state.

The rules are preposterous, but arcane rules or not budget cuts, including layoffs are going to happen.

Willing to Do Anything, Including Scooping Poop

Some people are willing to do nearly anything. This ad in Craigslist (I corrected numerous typos) is proof enough. Please consider Poop Pick up (Cape Cod)

Date: 2010-09-30, 9:53AM EDT

If you are tired of picking up after your dog, then this add is for you! I am willing to come to your house and clean your yard of all the dog crap, and haul it away! I can also walk the dog/dogs at a time that is best for you. I can also clean/hall trash yard debris etc. If you have a basement that needs cleaning/organization, give me a call! I am basically looking for those jobs that nobody else wants to do. No job is too big or small!

Expect to see more ads like that as benefits expire and the last remnants of various stimulus packages fade into distant memory.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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