The Buzz: Jerry Brown’s budget projects slight growth in California state workforce

01/11/2014 12:00 AM

01/13/2014 2:52 PM

State workforce to grow a bit, with 1.5% payroll rise

California’s state workforce will grow oh-so-slightly in the coming fiscal year, according to projections in the 2014-15 budget released by Gov. Jerry Brown this week, while total salary costs will grow an estimated 1.5 percent.

The bureaucracy will gain about 1,600 positions over the current 354,000 jobs in state government, university systems and Legislature – a growth rate of less than one-half of 1 percent and below the nearly 372,000 workers the state employed in 2010-11.

Wages for the workforce will increase roughly $384 million, to $26.6 billion in the coming year. A sizable portion, $173.1 million, would cover general salary increases of up to 2 percent for most state employees on July 1. State Finance Director Michael Cohen will have the final word in May on whether the state can afford the raises or if it defers and combines them with another raise scheduled for the 2015-16 fiscal year.

Brown envisions a slightly larger government next year, but it won’t keep pace with California’s expected population growth. His budget plan figures the ratio of 9.2 state workers for every 1,000 state residents, down from 9.3 employees per 1,000 Californians in the current year.

– Jon Ortiz

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