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Regional & National

Bredesen rejects furloughs for Tennessee state workers

February 16th, 2010 12:00 am by Associated Press

NASHVILLE - Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen says he considered - but ultimately rejected - shutting the doors of state government every other Friday as an alternative to laying off more than 1,000 state employees.

The Democratic governor said after a speech today to the Tennessee State Employees Association that the furlough option would have idled state workers for 24 days a year and would have made up the equivalent of a 10 percent pay cut for the Tennessee's about 45,000 full-time employees.

Bredesen said he considers laying off specific workers for business reasons to be a more fair approach to addressing Tennessee's budget woes.

The governor said he would rather "ask 1,000 people to find other jobs" than to make all state workers take a salary hit.

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