New York City could lose 23,000 workers

January 29, 2009 8:28:51 PM PST
Mayor Bloomberg will layout a grim budget that trims the workforce, cuts costs, but does not raise taxes. He will hold a news conference on Friday to explain the plan.

With tax revenues drying up, Bloomberg needs to close a four billion dollar budget deficit in fiscal 2010.

The plan includes new initiatives and about $1 billion in cuts for city agencies. The initiatives are aimed at reducing long-term spending on health care and pensions as well as Medicaid costs and debt service, among other programs.

Bloomberg's plan requires outside help from the federal and state governments as well as the city unions. Under the plan, city workers would be asked to contribute to paying for health care.

Without that help, the city could be forced to cut as many as 23,000 jobs through both attrition and layoffs. that's about 6.5 percent of the the city's 310,000-member workforce. The projected cuts include 15,000 teachers and other educators.

"The Mayor is cutting agency spending as much as he can without compromising our quality of life," Deputy Mayor Edward Skyler said. "But in order to close this deficit without destroying the core services New Yorkers rely on, the Mayor will need help from all of our partners, from the municipal unions to the leadership in both the state and nation's capitol. We all will have to do our part to get through these tough times."

Reports also say homeowners will lose their $400 rebates but won't be hit with new property taxes, a proposal City Council members had vowed to block.


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