Governor Paterson announced today that he'll be laying off 898 state workers by the end of 2010, in order to reduce the state's work force and save $250 million (the state plans to decrease the work force overall by 2,000). And Paterson laid the blame on unions, for not accepting pay lags or furloughs, "I'm not proud of that, but that is significant progress in trying to make sure there is a shared sacrifice in the deficit reduction and in an attempt to keep our budget balanced. I know that I'll get blamed, and I'll accept it, but the people in the leadership of the public employee unions know that they escorted me here."
The Times Union has some details on the layoffs ("In the Department of Transportation, 140 jobs will be cut"—Paterson said, "But the good news is it will not affect snow removal"). The outgoing governor added, "I didn't want Attorney General Cuomo or Mr. Paladino to have to take a layoff plan that I imposed on them. ... It was my decision that we had to go in this direction and I'll take full responsibility for it."