Judge Sides with Schwarzenegger on Furloughs

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, January 29, 2009

The court ruled that government code gives Schwarzenegger the authority to order most state workers two unpaid days off per month. 

The judge said the current circumstances constitute an emergency and the Governor’s order he made is reasonable and necessary.  Unions challenged Schwarzenegger’s authority to furlough workers.  The Governor has said it would save more than a billion dollars.  Jim Zamora is with the Service Employees International Union, Local one-thousand.  He says he’s disappointed. But he hopes ongoing negotiations with the Governor will result in a compromise.

“What the court ruling was about is the legality of the Governor’s ability to unilaterally enact these furloughs. It wasn’t about whether or not state workers are going to accept furloughs.”

The Professional Engineers In California Government is one of the other unions that filed the lawsuit.  A spokesman says they plan to appeal the judge’s ruling.  The Governor’s Communications Director says Schwarzenegger’s plan will help avoid layoffs.