Scott Walker turns Deficit into Surplus without any Layoffs while Los Angeles Furloughs Teachers

Posted by PITHOCRATES - June 10th, 2012

Week in Review

Los Angeles turns to furloughs to delay layoffs.  Betting everything on yet another tax increase this November (see Los Angeles teachers and school district reach pact to spare jobs by Howard Blume posted 6/9/2012 on the Los Angeles Times).

The Los Angeles school district and the teachers union reached a tentative agreement Friday that would prevent thousands of layoffs in exchange for 10 furlough days, which would shorten the school year by a week.

Under the accord, teachers would lose pay for five instructional days plus four holidays and one training day, equivalent to about a 5% salary cut…

If voters turn down a tax increase for schools, L.A. Unified’s budget woes would worsen considerably, the superintendent said. The equivalent of three additional weeks of school would have to be sacrificed, Deasy said. A typical school year is 180 days…

If the governor’s tax initiative passes, union officials said any additional money must go toward reducing the number of furlough days. And if teachers take the furlough days and the district ends up with a year-end surplus, teachers would be reimbursed for the pay cut, the union said.

More than 9,000 teachers had faced being laid off as of June 30…

This year’s crisis followed a familiar recession-era pattern. In 2008, the district closed a $427-million deficit; in 2009, $838 million; in 2010, $620 million; in 2011, $408 million. In all nearly 8,000 employees were laid off over the last four years; many teachers have since been rehired or used as substitutes.

Scott Walker didn’t furlough or lay off any teachers in Wisconsin.  They all kept their jobs by pitching in a little more for their benefits.  Amazing how just that can turn a deficit into a surplus.

This brings us to what’s missing in this article.  Pensions and health care benefits.  Which have to be the reason for all of those deficits.  Because public sector pensions and health care benefits are busting budgets in cities and states throughout the nation.  Especially for those retirees.  Which is why in the private sector people don’t get pensions anymore.  They save for their retirement in a 401(k).  And pay a large portion of their health care benefits.  An alien concept to those in the public sector.  But one they will soon learn.  Because the people are tired of sacrificing their lives to pay more taxes to support a privileged class who can retire earlier.  And enjoy more generous benefits in their retirement while they work well into their 60s to pay for it.

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