Over 9,000 managerial and unrepresented city employees will be furloughed for five days between October and March in an effort to save the city $21 million, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced this morning.
“I know this is difficult news for the dedicated public servants of our City,” de Blasio said. “But we are forced to make these difficult decisions as we face a massive budget shortfall with no help in sight. We need Washington and Albany to step up. We need a federal stimulus and we need long term borrowing.”
These furloughs come a week after the Mayor announced that nearly 500 City Hall staffers including himself, would be furloughed for five days. According to the Mayor, the city is facing a $9 billion toll on city revenue and has cut $7 billion from the budget between February and the Fiscal Year 2021 Adopted Budget, and de Blasio is struggling to convince the federal government to extend aid. Aside from the furloughs, the city is working with labor groups to prevent layoffs and find savings.
The city is said to be taking the following measures in order to make the city “fiscally responsible and prepared for adversity:”
- Increased reserve levels every year and increased general reserve to record levels
- Created first-ever Capital Stabilization Reserve
- Achieved billions of dollars in savings every year, even when revenue was strong
- At the height of the pandemic, achieved the largest savings plan of this administration ($5.8 billion in FY20 and FY21 and $1.7 billion recurring)
- Saw our bond rating increased last year due to strong fiscal management
- Created New York City’s first-ever Rainy Day Fund.
“[This furlough] is a difficult one. It will affect real people and their lives. It will affect their families. And these are people who’ve been working nonstop for months trying to protect all of you and look out for the whole city,” de Blasio said. “It’s something very sad when the people who’ve worked this hard have to then sacrifice further.”
“It’s something that is very painful to have to announce and has real human consequences, but it is necessary. And we continue our conversations with the labor unions. We continue our conversations with Albany trying to get relief,” he continued. “No one wants layoffs, but unfortunately, they are still on the table.”
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