Ponder this: If the state eventually loses the furlough litigation now in the courts, how will it fairly compensate employees for time worked under self-directed furloughs?
For an answer, look to State Compensation Insurance Fund. Two court decisions last year restored the roughly 8,000 employees there to full hours and wages and awarded back pay plus 7 percent.
The money part is done. The fund, which operates administratively and financially independent of state government, paid about $25 million to employees for lost wages. Another $565,000 went to interest on those wages. A few employees haven't received all the money, but "we're 99.9999 percent done," State Fund spokeswoman Jennifer Vargen told us last week.
But compensating employees for their time? That's much more complicated, as we noted in this blog post several months ago.
Vargen said that the Department of Personnel Administration prefers a "global" solution instead of an employee-by-employee review. She referred us to DPA for more.
So we asked DPA spokeswoman Lynelle Jolley. "Until there's a final ruling on our appeal in this case, there's no need for DPA to resolve this 'time' issue," she said in an e-mail.