The Oklahoma Public Employees Association is claiming a victory after the Corporation Commission announced it would not be furloughing employees. The commission apparently found some money to avoid having to send employees home without pay and close offices one day a week. Read Business Reporter Jay Marks’ story for the full details.
OPEA deputy director Scott Barger said the state employee’s association has been working with the commission in hopes of avoiding days without pay for state employees.
“State agencies our employees are already over-worked and under-paid,” Barger said in a release Tuesday. “Any cuts would be devastating financially to state employees.”
The association says the Corporation Commission has also found savings after 20 employees took voluntary buyout packages and five jobs were cut as part of a reduction-in-force. While some state agencies may have dodge a budget bullet this month, it’s not over.
State agency heads have been asked to look for additional cuts and state fiscal leaders are still looking for ways to create savings. It seems government is feeling the same pinch the private industry and nearly all types of industry are feeling. A downsize to meet or ‘right size’ the needs of an economy that is slowly rebounding.
The employee association has called for a limit in travel among state leaders and agencies. Some travel budgets have already been slashed, but it will be interesting to see who tows the line on the call to limit travel. Seems like trips on the state dollar will be hard to give up for some. What makes it more interesting is that it’s an election year.