Maui News

Governor Lingle Responds to HSTA Furlough Vote

September 24, 2009, 10:46 AM HST
* Updated September 24, 10:48 AM
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Governor Linda Lingle praised Hawaii’s teachers for ratifying a new contract that will result in 17 unpaid furlough days off, equating to an approximately 8 percent pay cut.

File Photo by Wendy Osher.

File Photo by Wendy Osher.

Lingle said she realizes it is not what teachers, students, and families had hoped or planned for, “but it reflects the state’s economic and fiscal realities.”

“They understand that everyone must make a shared sacrifice to help our state get through this difficult period and for State government to live within its means,” said Lingle.

The state DOE and the Board of Education have been working together to determine how to realize a 14 percent savings imposed by the governor to help close the growing budget shortfall.

There will be two furlough Fridays per month beginning on October 23rd with the exception of three furlough days in the December.

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“The furlough days will present challenges, but like other situations, our residents will come together to kokua, and ultimately come up with real, common sense solutions.  Moreover, I know the private sector will jump in to help, especially in the area of day care,” said Lingle.

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“I am confident our teachers will remain committed to their students and will find innovative ways to make the best of these challenging circumstances to ensure our children get the best possible education,” Lingle said.

(Posted by Wendy Osher; Lingle Statement provided by the Office of the Governor, State of Hawaii)

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