Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Local News

December 18, 2013

Proposal on table to bring back two city jobs

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Two city positions would be restored in Lockport’s 2014 budget according to a resolution Common Council members will discuss tonight.

An employee in the City Clerk’s Office and one in the Highways Department would get their jobs back, under the measure which is sponsored by Alderman Patrick W. Schrader, D-4th Ward.

The Common Council will meet at 6 p.m. in council chambers.

Schrader said money was found in the 2014 budget that would cover the cost of adding back both positions.

“The mayor and I feel we have enough money, from a number of different lines,” Schrader said.

Council President Anne McCaffrey, R-2nd Ward, is encouraging her colleagues to oppose the resolution. Nothing has changed since the budget vote last month, McCaffrey said. 

“There are no new retirements, no new concessions and no new revenue sources. The budget that we passed is one of the tightest budgets in recent history and there is no room for error,” McCaffrey said.

The highway worker, a member of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union, was needed for sewer and water maintenance, Schrader said. Schrader chairs the Council’s water and sewer committee.

And now is the time of year when sewer and water lines need attention, Schrader said.

“I hate to lose that body,” he said.

Another reason McCaffrey said she disagreed with the resolution, was that city officials just submitted a response to the New York State Comptroller’s Office with plans to decrease the city’s fiscal stress. Auditors from the Comptroller’s Office reviewed the city’s finances after Lockport was declared to be in fiscal stress by the comptroller.

“Reinstating positions that were removed from the budget with no offsetting revenue source contradicts our response to the Comptroller,” McCaffrey said. “We submitted detailed plans and measures to ensure a structurally balance budget and heightened monitoring to ensure fiscal stability and we need to follow through with these plans.”

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