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Is California bloated with state workers?




A worker pushes a wheelbarrow on a construction site.
A worker pushes a wheelbarrow on a construction site.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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Former Ebay executive Meg Whitman says if she’s voted in as California’s next governor she’ll tighten the budget belt and slash tens of thousands of state jobs. Public employee unions have responded in part by spending millions to support her rival, Jerry Brown. Public employees say they often take the heat for the state’s chronic fiscal woes, despite the fact that California has fewer state workers than most other states. So what are the facts? Does California have too many public employees? If so, then what can and should be done? And how much would this help the state’s budget woes?

Guest:

Jon Ortiz, columnist, blogger and reporter for the Sacramento Bee. He covers state workers and researched census data on the number and relative pay of state workers in California.

Terry Brennand, Senior Government Relations Advocate, Service Employees International Union

Marcia Fritz, President, California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility