PolitiCal

On politics in the Golden State

Category: Furlough

First Take: Top races too close to call. State lawmakers look at Bell scandal. Steinberg sees budget solution

A new poll shows both the races for governor and U.S Senate are close, with about one-fourth of voters still undecided in each race.

State lawmakers are among those looking at remedies in the wake of the Bell salary scandal.

Maeve Reston reports California Republicans are not talking about the environment, a popular issue among the state's voters.

George Skelton says the Senate leader, Darrell Steinberg, sees a way out of the budget stalemate.

Furloughs for state workers may be back, if the budget stalemate drags on past Aug.13.

Get the latest headlines from California politics as they happen. Follow PolitiCal on Twitter.

-- Anthony York in Sacramento

Schwarzenegger to order more furloughs for state workers

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will impose unpaid furloughs through executive order on most state workers again beginning in August, according to a union official who was briefed on the plan by the administration.

Roughly 200,000 state workers would be subject to the mandatory days off, though the governor is exempting the union bargaining units that have negotiated rollbacks of future pensions with his administration.

More details here.

-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento

High court to review state furloughs

The state Supreme Court said Thursday it would hear arguments in a lawsuit brought against the Schwarzenegger administration challenging the forced furloughs of workers at the State Compensation Insurance Fund.

At issue is whether the governor has the authority to furlough state employees through an executive order, the court said. The court noted that it may review the case while considering issues raised in other legal challenges targeting the administration’s furlough policies.

Capitol Weekly has the full story.

-- Anthony York

State Supreme Court holds off on wading into furlough legal battle

The California Supreme Court has decided against stepping into the ongoing legal battle over state worker furloughs, which force employees to take three days off without pay each month.

The court's decision Thursday was a setback for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who wants to dispense with two dozen lawsuits unions filed against the furloughs. The Supreme Court has opted to wait for lower court rulings on those cases before wading in. Schwarzenegger had asked the court to consolidate some of the pending furlough lawsuits in hope of a faster resolution.

Schwarzenegger began furloughing the state’s more than 200,000 employees in early 2009 to address California’s budget shortfall. Many labor unions have since sued, arguing the governor overstepped his legal authority when he began forcing workers to take first two, then three unpaid days off each month.

Lower courts have provided mixed rulings thus far, some affirming the governor’s authority to furlough, with others siding with the unions. The high court’s decision Thursday ensures the legal battle will continue for many more months.

-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento

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