The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

March 5, 2009
Governor's office: Tomorrow is the last 'Furlough Friday'

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's office minutes ago called us to break the news that tomorrow will be the last day that government statewide shuts down.

"I can announce that after Friday all state departments and agencies will be taking self-directed furloughs," said Aaron McLear, spokesman for the governor.

Let's be clear: All state workers, including those covered by the SEIU Local 1000 tentative agreement that calls for one furlough day per month from February of this year to June 2010, are going to take two furlough days this month. The second will be self-directed.

After this month, workers represented by SEIU will go to one-day-per-month self-directed furloughs. The governor's office will honor the agreement on the assumption that it will be ratified and passed by the Legislature.

Everyone else, unless their labor representatives work out different terms, will remain on self-directed, two-days-per-month furloughs.

(Clearly, this creates pressure on the other unions to bargain. We can't imagine that, say a hospital psychiatric technician in CAPT, the California Association of Psychiatric Technicians, would be thrilled to take two furlough days while a custodian coworker represented by SEIU has a deal for just one.)

We asked McLear about how constitutional officer employees under SEIU contract would make up the furlough days that they've missed. He's checking and will get back to us.

As for those SEIU-covered employees who will have taken four furlough days in two months, McLear would only say that the state will "honor the terms of the SEIU tentative agreement," but he wouldn't get into the specifics of how that will happen.

The state has been dealing with a lot of moving parts in figuring out its furlough policy, particularly how to handle the fact that terms of the tentative SEIU agreement for one furlough day each month covers 95,000 state workers, almost half of the rank-and-file workforce.

We're cranking up a larger story for tomorrow. Watch for it.

About Comments

Reader comments on are the opinions of the writer, not The Sacramento Bee. If you see an objectionable comment, click the "report abuse" button below it. We will delete comments containing inappropriate links, obscenities, hate speech, and personal attacks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. See more about comments here.

What You Should Know About Comments on is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)

Here are some rules of the road:

• Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "report abuse" button to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.

• Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.

• Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.

• Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand. If you want to discuss an issue with a specific user, click on his profile name and send him a direct message.

• Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.

• Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.

• Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.

• Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.

You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "report abuse" button to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.

If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them, but you may ask our staff to retract one of your comments by sending an email to Again, make sure you note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us your profile name.

hide comments
blog comments powered by Disqus

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


Now on the State Worker column

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

State Pay Database

This database allows you to search the salaries of California's 300,000-plus state workers and view up to four years of their pay history.

Latest Capitol Alert headlines

    404 - Not Found - The Sacramento Bee, Sacramento, California

    404 Not Found

    Our apologies....

    We can't find the page you requested in this location.

    The story may have moved or expired.

    You may wish to:

  • » More on the Capitol Alert blog


May 2013

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
      1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31  

Monthly Archives