Working under one of the most generous state leave policies in the nation – and the country's harshest furlough program – California government employees have built up the equivalent of $2.75 billion of paid time off.
Data analyzed by The Bee show that state workers had 75.5 million hours on the books as of May 28. The time was spread across 17 types of leave employees can cash out when they quit or retire. That's equal to nearly 11 weeks of paid time off owed each of the 176,000 state workers whose leave data are tracked by the state Controller's Office. Average cash value: $15,655 per person.
"We expect much of this time will be used for its intended purpose," said Lynelle Jolley, spokeswoman for the state's Department of Personnel Administration. "We don't want employees hoarding their leave time like it's some sort of retirement benefit."
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