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State Workers Awaiting Word Of Layoffs

Non-merit state workers in Kentucky are on edge as they await word on the future of their jobs.    The new state budget approved in a May special session requires Gov. Beshear to make enough cuts to avoid a $1.5 billion budget shortfall.  Beshear vetoed language requiring specific numbers of non-merit employees to be cut, saying he needed more discretion in how to make the reductions, but cuts are coming. “We’re in the process of analyzing both non-merit positions, contracts, leases and all the other things that the state spends money on, so that we can save the kind of money that we need to in the budget to make sure that it balances.”The governor has already ordered six furlough days for merit and non-merit employees, which the administration says will save the state $24 million.  A group of union workers has filed suit to try to block the furloughs.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.