Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. The Trump Stock Market Trap May Be Triggered - Barry_M_Ferguson
2.Why are Central Banks Buying Gold and Dumping Dollars? - Richard_Mills
3.US China War - Thucydides Trap and gold - Richard_Mills
4.Gold Price Trend Forcast to End September 2019 - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Money Saving Kids Gardening Growing Giant Sunflowers Summer Fun - Anika_Walayat
6.US Dollar Breakdown Begins, Gold Price to Bolt Higher - Jim_Willie_CB
7.INTEL (INTC) Stock Investing to Profit From AI Machine Learning Boom - Nadeem_Walayat
8.Will Google AI Kill Us? Man vs Machine Intelligence - N_Walayat
9.US Prepares for Currency War with China - Richard_Mills
10.Gold Price Epochal Breakout Will Not Be Negated by a Correction - Clive Maund
Last 7 days
The State of the Financial Union - 18th Aug 19
The Nuts and Bolts: Yield Inversion Says Recession is Coming But it May take 24 months - 18th Aug 19
Markets August 19 Turn Date is Tomorrow – Are You Ready? - 18th Aug 19
JOHNSON AND JOHNSON - JNJ for Life Extension Pharma Stocks Investing - 17th Aug 19
Negative Bond Market Yields Tell A Story Of Shifting Economic Stock Market Leadership - 17th Aug 19
Is Stock Market About to Crash? Three Charts That Suggest It’s Possible - 17th Aug 19
It’s Time For Colombia To Dump The Peso - 17th Aug 19
Gold & Silver Stand Strong amid Stock Volatility & Falling Rates - 16th Aug 19
Gold Mining Stocks Q2’19 Fundamentals - 16th Aug 19
Silver, Transports, and Dow Jones Index At Targets – What Direct Next? - 16th Aug 19
When the US Bond Market Bubble Blows Up! - 16th Aug 19
Dark days are closing in on Apple - 16th Aug 19
Precious Metals Gone Wild! Reaching Initial Targets – Now What’s Next - 16th Aug 19
US Government Is Beholden To The Fed; And Vice-Versa - 15th Aug 19
GBP vs USD Forex Pair Swings Into Focus Amid Brexit Chaos - 15th Aug 19
US Negative Interest Rates Go Mainstream - With Some Glaring Omissions - 15th Aug 19
GOLD BULL RUN TREND ANALYSIS - 15th Aug 19
US Stock Market Could Fall 12% to 25% - 15th Aug 19
A Level Exam Results School Live Reaction Shock 2019! - 15th Aug 19
It's Time to Get Serious about Silver - 15th Aug 19
The EagleFX Beginners Guide – Financial Markets - 15th Aug 19
Central Banks Move To Keep The Global Markets Party Rolling – Part III - 14th Aug 19
You Have to Buy Bonds Even When Interest Rates Are Low - 14th Aug 19
Gold Near Term Risk is Increasing - 14th Aug 19
Installment Loans vs Personal Bank Loans - 14th Aug 19
ROCHE - RHHBY Life Extension Pharma Stocks Investing - 14th Aug 19
Gold Bulls Must Love the Hong Kong Protests - 14th Aug 19
Gold, Markets and Invasive Species - 14th Aug 19
Cannabis Stocks With Millennial Appeal - 14th Aug 19
August 19 (Crazy Ivan) Stock Market Event Only A Few Days Away - 13th Aug 19
This is the real move in gold and silver… it’s going to be multiyear - 13th Aug 19
Global Central Banks Kick Can Down The Road Again - 13th Aug 19
US Dollar Finally the Achillles Heel - 13th Aug 19
Financial Success Formula Failure - 13th Aug 19
How to Test Your Car Alternator with a Multimeter - 13th Aug 19
London Under Attack! Victoria Embankment Gardens Statues and Monuments - 13th Aug 19
More Stock Market Weakness Ahead - 12th Aug 19
Global Central Banks Move To Keep The Party Rolling Onward - 12th Aug 19
All Eyes On Copper - 12th Aug 19
History of Yield Curve Inversions and Gold - 12th Aug 19
Precious Metals Soar on Falling Yields, Currency Turmoil - 12th Aug 19
Why GraphQL? The Benefits Explained - 12th Aug 19
Is the Stock Market Making a V-shaped Recovery? - 11th Aug 19
Precious Metals and Stocks VIX Are About To Pull A “Crazy Ivan” - 11th Aug 19
Social Media Civil War - 11th Aug 19
Gold and the Bond Yield Continuum - 11th Aug 19
Traders: Which Markets Should You Trade? - 11th Aug 19
US Corporate Debt Is at Risk of a Flash Crash - 10th Aug 19
EURODOLLAR futures above 2016 highs: FED to cut over 100 bps quickly - 10th Aug 19
Market’s flight-to-safety: Should You Buy Stocks Now? - 10th Aug 19
The Cold, Hard Math Tells Netflix Stock Could Crash 70% - 10th Aug 19
Our Custom Index Charts Suggest Stock Markets Are In For A Wild Ride - 9th Aug 19
Bitcoin Price Triggers Ahead - 9th Aug 19
Walmart Is Coming for Amazon - 9th Aug 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Top AI Stocks Investing to Profit from the Machine Intelligence Mega-trend

California Budget Showdown Over Wage Cut Defiance

Politics / US Debt Aug 06, 2008 - 09:59 PM GMT

By: Mike_Shedlock

Politics Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleThe budget crisis in California continues. In case you missed it, this will catch you up to speed.

California Synopsis

California's deficit is growing by about $1 billion a month.


California has the largest budget deficit in the US, dwarfing New York by a factor of three, and the Schwarzenegger has cut the wages of 200,000 workers to the US minimum wage which is lower than the California minimum wage.

In response, state controller John Chiang sent a letter to Schwarzenegger saying he will defy the order and issue employees their regular paychecks. With that backdrop this might not seem so surprising. ...

California Computers Can't Perform Pay Cut Because of COBOL


The Sacramento Bee is reporting California state computers can't handle pay cut, controller says .
If Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger wants to issue minimum-wage checks to 200,000 state workers in less than a month, he may want to rehire any semi-retired computer programmers he terminated last week.

The massive pay cut would exhaust the state's antiquated payroll system, which is built on a Vietnam-era computer language so outdated that many college students don't even bother to learn it anymore.

Democratic state Controller John Chiang said Monday it would take at least six months to reconfigure the state's payroll system to issue blanket checks at the federal minimum wage of $6.55 per hour, though Schwarzenegger insists such a change should occur this month.

Experts say Chiang isn't joking when he describes the state's payroll system as a computing relic on par with vacuum tubes and floppy disks.

"It's an example of a number of computer systems in which the state made a large investment decades ago and has been keeping it going the last few years with duct tape," said Michael Cohen, director of state administration with the Legislative Analyst's Office.

The Republican governor signed an executive order last week recommending the cut to minimum wage for most permanent state workers and terminating 10,133 temporary and part-time employees. He believes the state must take drastic steps to preserve cash over the next two months as the state continues to operate without a budget 36 days into the new fiscal year.

Chiang reiterated Monday that he will ignore the order and issue full paychecks to state workers. He disputes Schwarzenegger's legal interpretation of a 2003 California Supreme Court decision, which the governor said mandates that the state pay only minimum wage to employees until a budget is passed.

But even if the governor's legal reasoning proves to be sound, Chiang said, the state cannot logistically retool its payroll system in a matter of weeks as the governor has asked. And if the change eventually were made, Chiang said it would take an additional nine to 10 months to issue back pay to employees when the budget is approved.

"Pragmatically, we just can't get the system to work in a timely manner for us to implement payment of minimum wage," Chiang said.

Fred Klass, chief operating officer for Schwarzenegger's Department of Finance, testifying Monday in a Senate hearing, challenged Chiang's description of his logistical hurdles.

"We have not been provided with the evidence that would show us that this is an impossibility, nor does it answer the question of why aren't we working on this for next time," Klass said.

"To some degree, it's not the point," he added. "The point is the law needs to be adhered to, and the governor is saying we need to follow the law. And if the controller is saying it's inconvenient, I think the controller needs to explain why inconvenience is a reason to ignore the law."

The state payroll system is based on the COBOL, or Common Business Oriented Language, programming language – a code first introduced in 1959 and popularized in the 1960s and 1970s.

"COBOL programmers are hard to come by these days," said Fred Forrer, the Sacramento-based CEO of MGT of America, a public-sector consulting firm. "It's certainly not a language that is taught. Oftentimes, you have to rely on retired annuitants to come back and help maintain the system until you're able to find a replacement."

Schwarzenegger refusing to sign bills

The saga continues today with Schwarzenegger refusing to sign bills .
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced this afternoon that he is refusing to sign any bills into law until legislators pass a budget.

"There is no excuse for the Legislature's failure to reach a compromise and to send me a budget," Schwarzenegger said at a 2:45 p.m. press conference, more than a month into the new fiscal year. "Until the Legislature passes a budget that I can sign, I will not sign any bills that reach my desk." The move follows Schwarzenegger's order last week to drop to the federal minimum wage the salaries of most of of the state's 235,000 workers. After a budget is passed, they would be repaid.

The governor also laid off more than 10,000 part-time and seasonal workers. Many states have recently announced trouble.

Please consider

By Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com

Click Here To Scroll Thru My Recent Post List

Mike Shedlock / Mish is a registered investment advisor representative for SitkaPacific Capital Management . Sitka Pacific is an asset management firm whose goal is strong performance and low volatility, regardless of market direction.

Visit Sitka Pacific's Account Management Page to learn more about wealth management and capital preservation strategies of Sitka Pacific.

I do weekly podcasts every Thursday on HoweStreet and a brief 7 minute segment on Saturday on CKNW AM 980 in Vancouver.

When not writing about stocks or the economy I spends a great deal of time on photography and in the garden. I have over 80 magazine and book cover credits. Some of my Wisconsin and gardening images can be seen at MichaelShedlock.com .

© 2008 Mike Shedlock, All Rights Reserved

Mike Shedlock Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Comments

gmathol
08 Aug 08, 03:03
No Cobol Programmers?
That isn't the case! Around the World you will find a lot of Cobol applications old and new running on Mainframe, Server or PC. Most of the Bank applications are regardless what kind of GUI the are use are still written in Cobol. I even see 3270 applications working at my investment broker office.

You know they most used computer language? It is not C, C++ or but it is Rexx and Perl.
Kyle
08 Aug 08, 08:47
California - Not Believing It

He's saying they have to reprogram the whole system to issue the same checks for $6.55 per hour for everyone. This assumes everyone makes the same amount already. I doubt that ... there must be some kind of database that list what each person gets paid per hour ... just update that. No need to reprogram anything.

I also know Cobol, so if you want to make me a ridiculous offer of $655 per hour to fix your system, I'm available :)


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules