Prison guards don’t like California budget deal; may strike

The state correctional officers union is considering a strike as its members face the threat of more pay cuts stemming from the state budget crisis.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, as part of budget negotiations with lawmakers, recently proposed another 5 percent paycut to state employees. If lawmakers don’t approve the pay cut, Schwarzenegger said he would impose another furlough day to the three per month already approved for state workers.
The additional day off would equate to another 5 percent pay cut, on top of 15 percent already cut, according to state employees.
“Right now, the organization is contemplating a strike vote among our members, but we have not moved forward with that at this point, but that was a decision of our convention last week,” said California Correctional Police Officers Association spokesman Lance Corcoran.

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El Monte cops worried about budget cuts

El Monte cops say longer response times, less cops on the street and higher crime will be the end result of proposed budget cuts. They took their message to City Hall Tuesday night in hopes of impressing the City Council that no matter how cash poor the city might be it still needs its police force.

Here’s Bethania Palma’s story:

City officials have warned the police department that 14 to 17 officers could be laid off in an effort to manage a ballooning budget deficit. POA officials said Tuesday they hoped President Barack Obama’s signing of the stimulus bill and the possible pending resolution of the state budget could help resolve the need for such lay-offs.

“It’s going to kill the police department and it’s a slap in the face to the people that live and work here,” said El Monte police Detective Eric Walterscheid, the association’s vice president. “It’s going to disrupt the department’s ability to protect the city.”

Some said losing more than a dozen officers could jeopardize public safety and result in a longer wait before help arrives in some types of calls

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