Hawaii tax refund delays, salary cuts would continue under governor's plan
By MARK NIESSE
HONOLULU — Hawaii tax refunds would continue to be delayed every year and government employee salaries cut under Gov. Linda Lingle’s updated financial plan.
Lingle and her department heads appeared before Senate budget planners Thursday to explain her approach to keeping the state financially sound even after she leaves office later this year.
Her outlook shows that delaying tax refunds until July — an initiative starting this year to save $275 million on paper — would continue indefinitely in future years, without any expectation that refunds would ever be paid out faster.
The financial plan also anticipates that government employees, who make up the largest expense in the state budget, would have to take 5.5 percent pay cuts in the 2012 and 2013 fiscal years.