The Great Recession and the State and Local Government Workforce


To get a sense of the kinds of workforce changes and cost-cutting measures state and local governments have implemented following the recession, the Center conducted an electronic survey of members of the International Public Management Association for Human Resources (IPMA-HR) and the National Association of State Personnel Executives (NASPE).

The survey results show that hiring freezes, pay freezes, layoffs, and furloughs top the list of ways that governments have cut costs. In addition, half of the respondents reported that their governments have made the following changes to their health care plans:

  • Increased employee contributions (69 percent).
  • Added number of years required to vest (25 percent).
  • Added wellness programs, 24-hour nurse lines, or on-site clinics (25 percent).
  • Reduced benefits (23 percent).
  • Tiered benefits (15 percent).
  • Decreased employer contributions (10 percent).

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