Gov. Dannel P. Malloy confirmed that there could be layoffs of state employees.
During a press conference on Thursday afternoon, the governor said there could be 4,200 layoffs, but the negotiations continued with the unions.
“Talks are ongoing and constructive,” Malloy said. “I am optimistic that we will be able to meet our budget challenges as I proposed in February – with labor concessions that reduce our long-term fixed costs related to pensions and benefits for our employees. I believe that the leadership and members of SEBAC are also committed to a negotiated solution. We all hope that our contingency plans will ultimately not be necessary and that the structural solutions Connecticut needs can be found at the bargaining table.”
State leaders were told the governor is making a "contingency plan" for more layoffs during a meeting on Tuesday night.
Malloy said the plan would further reduce the state workforce by more than 1,100 in May as a first step toward resolving the budget shortfall for next year in the event that the state is unable to reach a comprehensive labor agreement.
In a letter, the governor identified the largest 12 agencies for the first round of layoffs:
In February, Malloy laid out his plans to balance the state's budget, with state employees facing possible layoffs as a way to do so.
"I have an obligation to submit a balanced budget to this general assembly," Malloy said. "It's only appropriate that I reflect my goals for labor savings. To that end, to help close the $1.7 billion hole we face, the budget before you assume approximately $700 million in state employee labor savings."
The letter said, in part “During a meeting Tuesday evening with the governor’s office, SEBAC leaders were notified the governor will announce the beginnings of the layoff contingency plan. According to the governor’s staff, action is being taken now because of notice requirements in various collective bargaining agreements. The governor will identify the largest 12 executive branch agencies funded by the General Fund, plus OPM and DAS, for the first round of layoffs. More widespread layoffs will happen if there is no success from the SEBAC exploratory talks. CSU-AAUP members are not at risk of layoffs presently.”
The annual savings from the plan is projected to be more than $80 million.
The Office of Policy and Management will continue to develop additional plans to balance the budget if a labor agreement is not reached, according to Malloy.
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