Bloomy announces big budget cuts

City agencies better get ready for some budget pain.

On Thursday, November 18, Mayor Michael Bloomberg released the city’s November Financial Plan for fiscal year (FY 2011) that includes $1.6 billion in new budget gap closings during the next two years with $585 million coming in the first year.

“We face a significant challenge for next year, as federal stimulus dollars run dry and the city still suffers from the impacts of the national economic downturn,” Bloomberg said in a statement. “We began working to attack next year’s deficit immediately after passing this year’s balanced budget, and there is still more work to do. More spending reductions are going to be necessary, and we have to continue to reduce the number of employees we have by not filling positions – we simply cannot afford the size of our current workforce.”

Under the mayor’s gap closing plan, all of the city agencies, including the NYPD, FDNY and Department of Education will be impacted.

Some of the specifics of his plan include reducing funding to the Department of Education (DOE) by $350 million, eliminating 350 civilian positions at the NYPD and redeploying staffing at 20 fire companies during overnight hours.

Other agencies that will see significant cuts are the Department of Parks and Recreation, where 1,468 full-time positions will see their work year reduced from 12 months to 9 months. Fifteen percent of its seasonal employees will also be eliminated.

In addition, Bloomberg’s proposal decreases subsidies to libraries by $20 million, which will reduce the average days of service per week by approximately one day per week citywide.

These gap closings will keep the city’s FY 2011 budget balanced at the current time, and reduce the FY 2012 budget deficit from $3.3 billion to $2.4 billion.

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