This broke in the Sack-town Bee last night:
“Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger plans to sign an executive order next week intended to temporarily reduce pay for 200,000 state workers to the federal minimum wage of $6.55 per hour to preserve cash until lawmakers reach a budget deal, according to a draft copy of the order obtained by The Bee.
The governor’s order also would terminate about 22,000 retired annuitants, temporary workers and seasonal employees, as well as impose a hard freeze that blocks the hiring of roughly 1,700 new employees per month.
Administration officials said the Republican governor expects to take the action Monday, when the budget will be four weeks late as Democrats and Republicans continue to spar over how to resolve a $15.2 billion shortfall.
“The administration is looking into many different options to preserve cash to ensure we have enough to cover our costs,” said Matt David, Schwarzenegger’s communications director.
But a spokeswoman for Democratic state Controller John Chiang, who pays the state’s bills, said he would ignore the governor’s order and continue paying full salary, likely forcing a court battle.
‘He will pay state workers the salaries that they have earned, and that’s full salary,’ Deputy Controller Hallye Jordan said of Chiang.”
Note that $6.55/hour equals $262.00 for a 40-hour workweek. In a month, that’s $1,048.00.
Gasoline alone, at an average of $4.50/gallon, is costing most folks about $200-$300 a month. I can’t fathom how anyone will be able to pay rent or eat on this wage.