Governor's 'Furlough Fridays' halted

March 6, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
State services will be returning to normal after a decision Friday in Sacramento. The state's so-called "furlough Fridays" are coming to an end.Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's office announced that this will be the last Friday the state shuts down all its offices, including branches of the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Instead, the administration is allowing employees to take so-called self-directed furloughs, letting them take any two days off a month without pay.

The move will save the state an estimated $1.3 billion through June 2010 without shutting down government offices the first and third Friday of each month.

Governor Schwarzenegger ordered the furloughs for more than 200,000 state workers during the height of the state's fiscal crisis.

Meantime, members of the Service Employees International Union Local 1000, the largest state employees union, are voting on an agreement that would reduce the number of self-directed furlough days to one a month.