Number of Alabama state employees grows

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The number of state government employees rose again in fiscal 2008. A report from the state Comptroller's Office shows state government ended the fiscal year Sept. 30 with 39,174 full-time workers.

That was an increase of 680 employees from the year before. State government has grown steadily since the end of fiscal 2004, when there were 36,444 full-time employees. That means 2,730 workers have been added in four years. That trend may change this year.

Gov. Bob Riley said he's considering imposing a hiring freeze for many state agencies due to the state's economic slowdown. Riley said a hiring freeze likely won't include chronically understaffed agencies, such as the Department of Corrections.

That department had the biggest jump in employees during the last fiscal year, with 201 workers added.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)