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State Worker Furloughs Ending, But Damage Already Done To Families

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SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Furloughed state workers will finally get their full paychecks in four years, but the cuts have taken their toll on families.

The new three-year contract for state employees was signed last month. It gives a three-percent raise this year, and then two percent for the next two years. It also says no furloughs.

Theresa Taylor works for the Franchise Tax Board and say her pay was cut from $250 to almost $1,000 at different times. She says years of furloughs forced her to drain her 401(k).

“We went to basic cable, we got rid of our security system.”

Through four years of furloughs, Theresa and her husband have been trying to make ends meet, even finding it difficult to pay their utility bill. Then things went from bad to worse.

“I remember not being able to pay my kids’ dental bills at the time. They got put into collections.”

As the number of furlough days increased, so did their money woes.

“We got rid of everything we could, and we still can’t afford the house payment.”

Now, even with furloughs over, they’re packing up boxes because their home is going back to the bank.

Theresa is trying to be optimistic.

“I think I’m settled because it’s just a house.”

But finding sympathy was difficult. She says it seems like people see public employees as the enemy.

“State workers are your neighbors.”

Now with extra money on her paycheck this week for the first time in years, Theresa wants to start saving. But it doesn’t take back the financial impact the furloughs have had on her life.

“We’ve lost a lot.”

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