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Judge Says Governor Can Furlough Workers

Sacramento, CA — A judge has sided with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in his bid to save money by forcing state workers to take days off without pay.

The two-day-a-month furloughs are scheduled to start next week. Two state employee unions had challenged Schwarzenegger’s executive order, saying he did not have authority to order furloughs on his own. A Sacramento County Superior Court judge disagreed.

He also cited the state’s financial condition. California will be forced to make billions of dollars in cuts to close a deficit projected to hit $42 billion through June 2010. In his temporary order Thursday, Judge Patrick Marlette said: "The current circumstances constitute an emergency."