Saturday, September 29, 2007

Michigan State Government Shuts Down - 35,000 Workers Sit at Home

Check out this quote from this article I just ran across in BusinessWeek...

Two-thirds of Michigan's state government workers were told Friday not to report to work Monday as negotiations continued on a budget plan that could avert a partial state government shutdown.

Messages went to about 35,000 state workers, telling them they were being placed on a temporary layoff beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday and not to go to work unless otherwise notified.

Sounds pretty extreme doesn't it?

The article tells us that about 18,000 government workers will actually stay on the job on Monday - 12,000 of them being prison employees. What they won't have on Monday will be food safety inspections or liquor deliveries. There also won't be anyone selling lottery tickets, issuing driver's licenses, or working on state roads. By the way, about three casino's will stay open since the state gets about 1 million daily from casinos - the money goes toward public schools and public safety.

Here's more from the article...

Members of the Granholm administration met with both House parties on Friday afternoon, raising hopes that a proposal was close to fill a $1.75 billion shortfall in the fiscal year that starts Monday.

Negotiations center on raising the state's personal income tax rate, now at 3.9 percent, to as high as 4.6 percent. Another key issue is extending the sales tax to some new services.

The Legislature adjourned late Friday and was scheduled to reconvene Saturday. There was hope among some at the Capitol that an agreement was within reach.

It sounds like there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel so we'll have to see if any more progress is made in these negotiations today.

Just never sounds good when you hear that 35,000 workers could be sitting at home on Monday.


Cynical Synapse said...

Those of us who are stuck with Michigan's budget debacle could be more hopeful if the buffoons in Lansing hadn't blown 9 months huffing and puffing in partisan bickering. It's a sad commentary on the ineptness and shortsightedness of our legislature.

Just to clarify, the casinos were originally slated to shut down because the Gaming Commission oversight people are part of the 35k being laid off. But the casinos got a judge to issue an order telling the state they couldn't shut them down, oversight or not. It has nothing to do with consideration for the school budget. In fact, if the shutdown lasts until October 20th, schools won't get their state per-pupil funding on time.