New details emerged Thursday about the contract Gov. Neil Abercrombie negotiated with the Hawaii Government Employees Association.

It turns out that Hawaii state and county workers will be getting 5 percent less pay, as he said in a press release and FAQ.

But they’ll also be working less. Nine days less.

Abercrombie told us the union had accepted a 5 percent pay cut. But nowhere in his official statements on the subject did he share the fact that they’ll also be working nearly 4.5 percent fewer hours.

Fewer hours for less pay. Sounds like furloughs.

But Abercrombie can’t call them that. He had promised to end furloughs.

Kalbert Young, Neil Abercrombie budget Dec. 19, 2011

Gov. Neil Abercrombie, right, with budget director Kalbert Young.

Nanea Kalani/Civil Beat

As he said in his FAQ Wednesday: “The Governor promised to end furloughs and have government working for the people of Hawaii five days a week.”

That’s what he said the deal does: “There will be no more furloughs, meaning government offices and services will no longer shut down every other Friday.”

True, to a point. But government employees will work fewer hours and be paid less.

Abercrombie is the governor who in February told the public: “I am the governor. I’m not your pal. I’m not your counselor. I am the governor. And I am determined to be truthful with everybody about what we have to do together to survive.”

If Abercrombie is determined to be “truthful” with everybody, why didn’t he tell us that state workers will be working nine fewer days per year?

The governor should have trusted us enough to tell us the whole story.

Instead, he left us wondering what else he didn’t tell us.

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