Sandoval: Furloughs out, pay cuts in

Victor Joecks

In a letter to state employees dated yesterday, Gov. Sandoval told them that he is proposing a 5 percent pay cut in his budget and ending the furlough program (and the accompanying 4.6 percent pay cut).


1. From a policy perspective, this makes sense. As Gov. Sandoval wrote in his letter, the Cabinet officers have noted that "the furloughs are difficult to manage." It's also an encouraging sign for Gov. Sandoval's budget that will be released on Jan. 24. To keep his promise to spend only what the state has, he must reduce spending to around $5.3 billion.

2. As a courtesy to state workers, this letter makes sense. The letter (the best I can tell) wasn't sent to the media. It was sent directly to state employees. If you're going to cut someone's salary, telling the person directly is better than letting him or her hear about it in news reports.

3. This is not, NOT, a tax increase on state workers. While it's great to see leftists and state workers acknowledge the negative impact of tax increases, cutting state worker pay is exactly that – a pay cut, not a tax increase.

Exit question: How long until we hear someone say that if both a husband and wife work for state government, this would be a 10 percent pay cut?

And if you believe that it would be a 10 percent cut – think about it, think about it …