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Newswatch

For Monday, April 11, 2011

By Associated Press

POSTED:



Slom proposes stripped-down budget

The only Republican in the Hawaii Senate says the state's budget can be balanced by making deep cuts and laying off government employees instead of raising taxes.

Sen. Sam Slom proposed on Friday eliminating about 1,500 jobs and about 500 vacant positions as a way to reduce government costs.

He said his budget would eliminate programs that don't serve essential government purposes.

He said Medicaid services have expanded too far, the Department of Education employs too many administrators and Department of Health functions are unnecessary.

Slom's bare-bones budget would cost $4.4 billion in general funds, a $500 million decline from the current year's budget and $1 billion less than the House's proposal.

Media contractor sought for APEC

The Hawaii Host Committee for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting scheduled to be held in November is seeking a contractor to produce a media supplement to promote economic investment here.

Chairman Peter Ho said the committee wants APEC's 15,000 delegates to leave the meeting with an increased awareness and interest in Hawaii's investment opportunities. The deadline for submission is Friday.

County could save millions in union deal

A tentative deal with Hawaii’s largest public-sector union stands to save Hawaii County $3 million in the coming fiscal year, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reports.

Members of the Hawaii Government Employees Association still need to ratify the two-year contract Gov. Neil Aber­crom­bie announced Wednesday.

Terms call for a 5 percent pay cut, ending twice-monthly worker furloughs and splitting monthly health care premiums evenly between employers and employees. Workers would receive six hours of additional paid time off each month, or nine more vacation days annually.






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