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Ige: No furloughs thanks to new federal coronavirus aid

HONOLULU — Hawaii won’t need to furlough or lay off workers because the state will be receiving more financial help from the federal coronavirus relief legislation, said Gov. David Ige on Thursday.

Ige warned in December that the state would need to furlough more than 40,000 employees to balance the budget after plummeting tourism depleted tax revenue. But he delayed the furloughs after Congress approved a second round of coronavirus relief in December. The third and latest package signed by President Joe Biden, which provides Hawaii with about $1.6 billion to bolster its budget, allows the governor to take furloughs off the table completely.

“This new infusion of federal funding gives the state much needed breathing room so that layoffs and furloughs are no longer necessary in the foreseeable future,” Ige said in a statement.

The governor said his administration will continue to assess the measure to get a clearer picture of how it will affect the state budget.

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