The gobernator has done it! It's "Hasta la Vista, Baby" for thousands of public employees in California. BBC has the info.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California has moved to end a budget crisis by sacking 22,000 state workers and ordering pay cuts for 200,000.
The biggest state in the US faces a budget deficit of more than $15bn, and legislators are struggling to agree a spending plan.
The cuts, which will save $100m a month, are designed to put pressure on politicians to end the budget crisis.
But a leading official in the state challenged the decision to cut pay.
California has one of the largest economies in the world and it has no way to pay contractors for many of the services it provides.
Some 30 American states face budget deficits caused by rising costs and falling revenues in a slumping economy but California's is by far the largest.
Mr Schwarzenegger, the former Hollywood film star turned Republican politician, told reporters he had signed an executive order on the staff and pay cuts.
"Today I am exercising my executive authority to avoid a full-blown crisis and keep our state moving forward," he said.
"This is not an action I take lightly but we do not have a budget and, as governor, I have a responsibility to make sure our state has enough money to pay its bills."
California's state financial controller, John Chiang, a Democrat, has vowed not to implement the pay cuts, saying to do so could risk legal action.
He sent a letter to Mr Schwarzenegger on Thursday saying he would defy the order and issue employees their regular salaries.
The governor's executive order, he said, was based on "faulty legal and factual premises".
Asked whether his administration would sue the state financial controller's office if it did not comply with the executive order, Mr Schwarzenegger said:
"If that's what it takes. I'm here to make sure that our state functions, and whatever it takes, I will do it."
This is what happens when you elect a dumb, son of an SS officer, action hero as a governor. Where's your messiah now, see!