Kulongoski ups demand for furlough days

SALEM — Gov. Ted Kulongoski now wants unionized state workers to agree to 26 unpaid furlough days, up from his earlier request of eight days agreed to by the union.

Service Employees International Union Local 503 director Leslie Frane says the governor wants the workers to take two furlough days by June 30, and 24 days, one a month, during the 2009-11 budget cycle.

State negotiators made the new demand Monday. It amounts to a 5 percent pay cut.

Kulongoski spokesman Rem Niven said if all state workers, union and nonunion, agree it would save the state $105 million. Oregon is looking at a shortfall of up to $3 billion in the next biennium because of projected low tax revenues.

Frane said union members were dismayed.

— The Associated Press

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