HSTA president reacts to Governor Lingle's budget plan

(KHNL) - Governor Linda Lingle has a plan to reduce the state's $185 million budget deficit, but it could leave state workers with a 14% salary cut.

The governor says she wants mandatory unpaid time off for all state workers.

She says it's either this, or laying off nearly 10,000 state employees.

Meanwhile, the state workers union may consider legal action to stop the salary cuts.

But state law does not allow the governor to issue furloughs to workers in the Department of Education, the University of Hawaii, and the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation.

Instead, Lingle says she will issue budget cuts that equal to furloughing workers for three days a month.

State school leaders say, that adds up to an additional $110 million of cuts.

To absorb the loss, they may implement furloughs, consolidate schools, increase class size and reduce consultant services.

If furloughs are instituted, that could mean about a month off of school.

To talk more about this is Roger Takabayashi, the president of the Hawaii State Teachers Association.