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Tue Jul 10, 2012, 02:48 PM

.Public Workers Face New Rash of Layoffs, Hurting Recovery.

“Each time there was a recession with a Republican president,” he said, “we compensated by making sure that government didn’t see a drastic reduction in employment.”

If governments still employed the same percentage of the work force as they did in 2009, the unemployment rate would be a percentage point lower, according to an analysis by Moody’s Analytics. At the pace so far this year, layoffs will siphon off $15 billion in spending power. Yale economists have said that if state and local governments had followed the pattern of previous recessions, they would have added at least 1.4 million jobs.

Conservatives have argued that the government was bloated after a hiring surge during the housing boom and is now returning to a more appropriate size. Michael D. Tanner, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, criticized the president’s budget proposal to give states an additional $30 billion for teachers, police officers and firefighters. “Those new public sector jobs must be paid for with more debt and taxes borne by the private sector,” he wrote.

But those with disappearing jobs say that the effects are not just economic — they mean longer response times to fires, larger class sizes, and in some cases lawsuits when short-staffed agencies are unable to provide the required services.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/20/business/public-workers-face-continued-layoffs-and-recovery-is-hurt.html?src=recg

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