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Esky laying off city workers

November 6, 2009
By Jenny Lancour

ESCANABA - Eight city employees will be laid off next week because of declining funds in the city's budget caused by a reduction in state revenue-sharing monies, city council was informed by City Manager Jim O'Toole on Thursday.

"It's a result of the revenue-sharing cuts out of Lansing," O'Toole said after the council meeting, explaining why eight workers were laid off from Public Works' street crew. One layoff was voluntary while the others were not voluntary, he said.

With the recent state budget, the city will be receiving $157,000 less in state revenue sharing funds, O'Toole explained to council, calling the layoffs a "tough call" that did not come easy.

"We have been preparing for this day," he said. Over the years, department heads have taken on added responsibilities as administrative positions were not filled following retirements, eliminating jobs through attrition, he said.

O'Toole said the city will be communicating with its employee groups to consider work furloughs and other cost-saving measures.

On top of the loss in state revenue, the city will also experience a reduction of more than $13,000 due to a .3 percent reduction in the multiplier factor used to determine property assessments for tax purposes, he added.

O'Toole said after the meeting the layoffs in the street department will not affect snowplowing in the city. Employees can be called back to work, if needed, he said.


Jenny Lancour, (906) 786-2021, ext. 143,



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