Ariz. state workers told to turn off the lights

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PHOENIX -- It's literally lights out for Arizona state offices at the close of business.

That's the gist of a directive by Department of Administration Director Bill Bell. He instructs all state agencies, boards and commissions to have employees turn off lights in offices, restrooms, hallways and other places in state buildings at the close of business.

Bell's directive issued Tuesday cites the state's budget crisis and says turning off lights will produce unspecified but "significant savings." He notes that most state buildings have older electrical systems that don't allow lights to be turned off automatically or centrally.

The state faces a projected shortfall of nearly $1.6 billion in its current $9.9 billion budget for the fiscal year now more than half over.

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