Maryland state worker layoffs coming
After 18 months of budget cutting, Gov. Martin O'Malley has finally gotten to the point of laying off a large number of state employees, maybe as many as 1,000, Gadi Dechter and Laura Smitherman reported this morning. The news is not so surprising, in that the state has already eliminated hundreds of vacant positions and cut hundreds of millions in spending and still faces a budget gap of nearly $2 billion in the spending plan for the next fiscal year. But the blow still probably comes hard to state workers, many of whom looked on O'Malley's mandatory government furloughs as painful but better than layoffs.
Now you've got furloughs AND layoffs. And that still won't come close to solving Maryland's budget problems. Unless the Obama administration comes through with some significant aid to the states, it looks like tough times are ahead for the people who rely on government services -- and that may lead to some tough elections ahead for Maryland's politicians.