State Controller:

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, August 4, 2008

At a special legislative hearing on the Governor’s Executive Order, Controller John Chiang told lawmakers it could take six months to readjust the salaries of 200-thousand workers to the federal minimum wage.  He says that’s because the state’s payroll equipment can’t handle it:

“The jeopardy to the people is exorbitant and frankly we don’t have a system in place that can pay minimum wage in a timely fashion.  We have an old system, so it’s important that they understand pragmatically, it just doesn’t work.”

Schwarzenegger issued an Executive Order cutting state workers’ pay and laying off ten-thousand temporary employees last week.  He says it’s needed to keep the state from running out of cash.  But Chiang says the state has plenty on hand.  He won’t comply with the Governor’s order and is prepared to fight Schwarzenegger in court.  Chiang says the real problem is the lack of a state budget.   It’s now more than a month late.