State employees brace for layoffs

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — State employees are expecting layoffs after Governor Malloy hinted that thousands of state workers could lose their jobs by June. Exactly which jobs are at stake is still not clear, but the governor has made his intentions clear and now state workers across Connecticut are bracing for impact.

“There’s going to be large layoffs in the state workforce,” Malloy told News 8 Thursday morning.

In efforts to shore up a $200 million budget deficit, many state employees will soon lose their jobs. Even after raising taxes, the state is struggling with raising revenue.

“You can only spend as much money comes in the door,” Malloy said. “Not going to raise taxes. Have to make adjustments.”

The news is unsettling for labor leaders. The AFL CIO of Connecticut said the governor hasn’t discussed any specifics about what they can expect. They call the impending layoffs, a direct attack on the middle class.

“If this was a corporation laying off thousands of workers, the governor would’ve met with the leaders of the corporation,” said Lori Pelletier, president of the Connecticut AFL-CIO. “And he needs to meet with these leaders.”

The largest employer in Connecticut, is the state itself. Union leaders suggest that lawmakers should raise taxes on the top one percent of residents, or roll back some tax exemptions as a way to raise revenue without sharp layoffs.

“These are working families,” Pelletier said. “People who live in our neighborhoods and pay taxes, shop at local the deli, have dry cleaning done. These are families that are affected.”

Malloy estimates that the reduction in state employees could save around $6 million. Which is a small fraction of the $200 million deficit. More specifics on who these layoffs will affect will come before the end of spring.

*CORRECTION: News 8 reported earlier that “30 percent of state workers could lose their jobs by June.” We were informed by Governor Malloy’s Office that that figure is inaccurate as they are not reporting a percentage.

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