June 4, 2009

City layoffs may not be needed, mayor says

Two city unions that did not agree to make concessions in order to save jobs may yet come around.
Mayor Art Ward said Thursday he hopes both the police and the "outside workers" unions will take another look quickly and opt to give back raises in return for avoiding layoffs or other changes.
Ward said he won't lay off any police officers because of public safety considerations and the reality that taxpayers just got done shelling out big money to train the newest recruits, who would be the first to go if layoffs are made.
Instead, Ward said the city might lay off civilian members of the department or it may opt for more creative options. He declined to talk about other possibilities until the city can sit down with the union and detail its thinking.
After it hears the alternative, the mayor said, it will have "a very short window" to consider concessions instead. He said he hopes it will rethink its position.
"The economyis such that measures have to be taken," Ward said.
Keeping more officers on the street should also help hold down overtime, the mayor said, which is a crucial step toward controlling the department's budget.
The mayor said that Local 1338 of Council 4 of the American Federation of State, Countyand Municipal Workers may take another look at making concessions soon. He said he hopes its members will take the step needed "in the very, very near future" to avoid layoffs.
Local 233, which represents the "inside" workers, accepted a wage freeze for the coming fiscal year in return for a no-layoffs promise. The supervisors association also accepted a freeze.
Ward said the $170 million budget slated for approval tonight will freeze property taxes and slice 14 jobs from the city payroll permanently. They've remained vacant for many months as part of the spending reductions ordered a year ago, the mayor said.

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Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com

22 comments:

Odin said...

It sounds like the Police Union cannibals (as in "they eat their young") underestimated Ward's ability to think outside the box. They better call him back pretty quick.

Anonymous said...

I hear that Ward plans to bust some management in the police station back to street patrols in order to save money. That would stick it to the union and its overtime mania!

Anonymous said...

Just cut the OT and let the Chief figure it out.

Just because your son is a police officer doesn't mean that you know how to run the department.

Stop trying to Micro Manage!

Anonymous said...

If Ward didnt' give the nice raise to the police we wouldn't be in this possition right now.

Anonymous said...

Local 1338 leadership is trying to overturn a vote already taken. The leadership of our local is in buddy buddy with Ward and didn't like the no vote. Now they are running around trying to overturn a legal vote to make Ward look good.

Paul and Pete, how about showing some leadership and work for us, the members instead of your buddy Ward?

Anonymous said...

Pete English have been running around talking about us. WE ARE WHO YOU SHOULD SUPPORT, NOT WARD!

Start acting like a leader, not a lap dog!

Anonymous said...

How many do-overs do they get? Thought is was either lay offs or concessions - guess not.

Anonymous said...

It was all staging to make Ward look like he is the tough guy and a leader. Maybe the Mayor should stick to what he knows best - trash.

Anonymous said...

Election year right ????? First mayor in how many years to lay people off.... Ah yah I doubt it.

Anonymous said...

So who blinked? Did the union call the mayors bluff and he couldn't go through with it, or did the union realize they look like idiots and begged for another chance??

Anonymous said...

"It was all staging to make Ward look like he is the tough guy and a leader"

Honey, "staging" had nothing to do with it. Ward is the tough guy and leader. Nice of you to finally recognize that fact!

Anonymous said...

Anyone who thinks that Ward is not 100% for the Unions is sadly misinformed. I'd bet my house that Art won't do ANY layoffs for one single Union worker. He knows if he does, he will not be re-elected. Thats the bottom line. It's all bark and no bite. You're all safe Union workers...so chill out...and in yoiur spare time (which you all have lots of)go find a way to suck us taxpayers a little more drier than we already are by your overpaid wages and burdensome benefits. On in America. And you wonder why the rest of the world hates us and laughs at us. It's because we are not "United". We are all greedy and out for ourselves. We couldn't give two sh*ts if our fellow co-worker or neighbor gets laid off. Which was clearly shown by the "NO" vote from the Union members. This is nothing but legalized robbery at it's best.

Anonymous said...

"I'd bet my house that Art won't do ANY layoffs for one single Union worker."

So, where is this house and where will you be moving to?

Anonymous said...

Art, when are going to stop playing games: with peoples lives, with their livelihood, and with our tax dollars?

You are an embarassment to Bristol!

Anonymous said...

Art get a pair and start the THE LAYOFFS. The union is making you look like a fool.

Anonymous said...

3:05

Last mayor was Stortz and he didn't get reelected.

Think art is aware of that?

Anonymous said...

What a joke bristol politics are. The union is ruining bristol and these freafs get away with it. THANKS TO THE VOTERS.

Dump said...

If ward recognized trash 2:48, you would definately be classified as solid waste.

Anonymous said...

First you say you won't, and then you say you will: Art, sounds like an old song to me.

Anonymous said...

9:14pm with a nickname "dump" you are not far off from being waste yourself.

Anonymous said...

"City Layoffs not needed"

Should read,
not before this novembers election

Anonymous said...

Why haven't we been told what Ward conceded to get the concesions?