March 25, 2011
The city of Salinas plans to eliminate 66 positions as it faces a $7.1 million budget shortfall in fiscal year 2011-12, city officials announced on Thursday.
In a report dated March 29, Finance Director Tom Kever recommends layoffs occur over the course of three months, with the police department poised to take the deepest cuts, where 31 positions are to be eliminated.
"The only viable solution to balancing next year's budget [is] with significant reductions in employee salary and benefit costs," writes Kever. The city has already saved jobs where it can, he says; Employee concessions of up to 18 percent, through furloughs and benefit cuts, have saved an estimated 60 positions since 2009, by saving the city $12 million over two years. The city employs about 540 workers. Over the past two budget cycles, 127 positions--more than 20 percent of the city's workforce--have been eliminated.
The environmental and maintenance department, parks and community services, library and fire department are among the other proposed targets for layoffs. Salaries for the positions to be cut range from $31,588 to $211,505.