Thursday, December 17, 2009

McDonnell Warns State Employees of "the Uncertainty of Tomorrow"

Bob McDonnell wrote an email to state employees on Tuesday which suggested that there might be some major job cuts in state agencies in the near future. This is largely due to the fact that McDonnell won’t consider delaying or rolling back some tax cuts (like the estate tax) which largely favor the wealthiest people living in Virginia. According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, there are some people who are rushing to McDonnell’s defense by claiming that he was simply trying to reach out to the state employees. The tone of McDonnell’s email, however, make it clear that some major changes are coming and employees should prepare for the negative impact.
"The challenges we face in state government reflect the challenges faced by private-sector employers and families in every community in our state," McDonnell wrote Tuesday.

"Revenues are down. Cuts have been, and will continue to be, made. The uncertainty of tomorrow looms constantly over the work that must be done today."
As it currently stands, there are 120,800 people who are on the state payroll and the vast majority (a little over 95 percent) of them work for agencies that are controlled by the governor’s office. With a $3.5 billion budget shortfall over the next two years, there needs to either be some new revenues, major cuts made to crucial programs that have already been cut to deal with shortfalls in previous years, or some combination of the two. Since Bob McDonnell has already made it clear that he won’t support generating new revenues because that might not sit well with his wealthy donors, it shouldn’t be surprising that the 120,800 people who work for the state are being told to prepare for the worst.

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