Layoffs, Program Cuts in $35.6M Peekskill Budget Proposal

Peekskill's Acting City Manager Brian Havranek's submitted a $35,650,045 budget proposal for 2013 to the Common Council Monday that would cut 31 full-time and 9 part-time positions.


A budget proposal submitted by acting Peekskill City Manager Brian Havranek would eliminate 31 full-time positions next year.

Havranek submitted a $35,650,045 proposal for the 2013 fiscal year to the Common Council Monday. The proposal represents a $388,937 decrease from this year's operational budget.

 The tax levy would increase $837,972, to $14,804,248, and the tax rate would increase 6 percent, to $236.90 per $1,000 of assessed value. The average Peekskill taxpayer would see an increase of about $10.13 a month in additional city taxes.

Havranek's proposal would cut 31 full-time employees, or 14 percent of the workforce, for a savings of about $2.9 million. Of those 31 positions, seven are currently vacant.

 "The current economic environment under which we are operating is extremely difficult and although there are signs that the economy is recovering, it is not growing fast enough," Havranek wrote in a letter to the common council.  "With that in mind, my directive to each of the department heads for the FY 2013 budget was of reduction and consolidation and 'to think outside the box'. This budget will enable the continuation of essential services to the community."

 A preliminary list of full-time being targeted for elimination include 15 administrative positions, 10 public safety positions and six positions in the department of public works.

 In addition to the 31 full-time positions, another 9 part-time positions would be cut, for a savings of about $164,349. 

 "Furthermore, a number of key management positions were only partially funded for the FY 2013 budget," Hravenek wrote. "The assistant city manager was budgeted for nine months of 2013, the city manager position was budgeted for the last quarter of 2013 (three months) and the director of public works/city engineer was budgeted for 10 months of 2013."

 Hravenek said he started the budget preparation process with a gap of nearly $5 million, which would have resulted in a tax increase of 35.3 percent. 

 He blamed a 21.5 percent increase in state pension costs, a 12 percent increase in health insurance premiums and shortfalls in revenue projections as some of the driving factors behind the city's increased expenses.

 Other measures that would be taken to decrease the tax rate include:

  • Decreases in the number of contractual lines
  • Salary freezes for non-union management
  • Substantial cuts to operational line items
  • Increases in general fees
  • Reductions in programs
  • Reorganization and consolidation of departments.

During Monday's work session, the common council scheduled  budget review sessions for Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.; Oct. 10, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.; and on Oct. 29, from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Check back for more updates as they become available. A PDF containing Havranek's proposal is attached to this story.

Apollo October 04, 2012 at 02:49 AM
TO THE POINT October 04, 2012 at 02:57 AM
I think the mayor is doing her very best to turn the tax payers of peekskill against the city workers for contract reasons.Maybe they should ask themselves where has all the money gone.her and the bobble head dolls(counsil) has spent all this money with nothing to show for it!FIREHOUSE why spend that much money just to get her name on a building?Put your name on city hall first to show everyone how you ran it in the ground!!As far as Patty V sounds like you are a very angry person. Is that because you where thrown out of bid or because you had a failing business in peekskill? Keep your comments in putnam where you live and pay TAXES
disappointed October 04, 2012 at 03:07 AM
Real Talk i know first hand i nworked there and seen alot and personally i could care less who sees this they screwed me 2x for no reason and lied so they know who they are and they know who does what if your not there puppet then ur out and don't say anything wheather ur right or wrong to them sex abuse was o.k. also having an employee that has seizures while driving a City Vehicle and has had accidents and they still let him drive , also had accidents in city vechicle and tried to cover it up pissing in peoples basements and peeking through customers windows and they did NOTHING what does he got on the city that he hasn't been fired but they let the people who wants to work and bust the butts did what they had to do and more ..they let go also have employees using the "n" word quite often pulled a gun on employee and still has his job really......so Foster needs to get a whole crew in city hall and but the ones in there on the streets and see if they could do the jobs and really see who works it'll be a shock to them they have no clue
Rasheed Oluwa (Editor) October 04, 2012 at 03:24 AM
Hello Marie. I realize this is a heated discussion, especially with all the jobs that are on the line. But I need you to tone things down just a bit. This goes for everyone else out there. Please try to steer away from anything that can be construed as being libelous in nature. I want you guys to speak freely, but I'm also trusting you guys to rein in your emotions.
disappointed October 04, 2012 at 03:40 AM
no problem Rasheed
disappointed October 04, 2012 at 03:41 AM
just speaking the truth
leesther brown October 04, 2012 at 03:59 AM
Hello Friends, There is going to be a Demonstration at 5:30 PM on Tuesday (October 9th) in front of Peekskill City Hall. The Committee for Justice and the Westchester Grassroots Coalition and supporters are standing up in support of city workers being laid off by Mayor Mary Foster and her administration. We are also standing strong with their Union officials. This effort weaves nicely with our anti-racism and Justice issues as we are being asked to stand with them. There is also a plan to close the Kiley Center which has been an important resource and Center for City Kids. The impact on poor people and People of Color will typically feel the impact. These “budget decisions” come at a time when money is being tagged for a Public Relations Firm to improved the sadly tarnished image of the Mayor and plans for a very elaborate new firehouse among other items. This is a stand against the Mayor’s leadership, deceit and insensitivity we have all personally witnessed. The Press have been notified. There will be signs there and we hope you and your friends will join us on Tuesday afternoon. Jim Edler
leesther brown October 04, 2012 at 04:02 AM
I Thought I'd Share The Recovering Racist Jim Elders Latest Post On FB....What we need to do is run this fool and his buddies out of Peekskill and the citizens stand up to Foster and these Idiots...I'm sick and tired of these fools..
leesther brown October 04, 2012 at 04:24 AM
That should go for ...Darrell Davis,Jim Elder, Sandy Bernabei, and the rest of the "out of towners"..It's time for the folks that pay taxes in this city stand up for the many that service us with Pride....#stayinyourlane..
jo October 04, 2012 at 01:03 PM
jo October 04, 2012 at 01:12 PM
and your proof is.. ???????????????????
real talk October 04, 2012 at 01:50 PM
your problem is with the administration marie not the workers i really think it is wrong for you to be out here talking bad against your former employees bosses and administrations is one thing co-workers is another. you were in the union. why didnt they help you. it sound like you are mad because you lost your job and now you want everyone else to suffer too. Very selfish.
real talk October 04, 2012 at 01:59 PM
i feel bad that anyone have to go through these hard times but i do have one question. Where was their union the whole time this was going on. You mean to tell me they really didnt know what was happening. Like always the union will wait till people get fired or lose their jobs to act like they care and try to help you. Unbelievable.There has been many of council meetings addressing the problems withing the city from harrassment to discrimination and not once did i see their union represent them or even show up to offer support. Good luck city workers
jo October 04, 2012 at 03:00 PM
still waiting for your proof of my negativity.. tick..tock..tick tock
disappointed October 04, 2012 at 05:33 PM
of course the union knew Real talk someones getting paid off the union only acts like they care when someone gets fired even though they know whats going on the UNION isn't for the employees any more they work for the city so it seems
real talk October 04, 2012 at 07:59 PM
you did nothing but commented on the snow. i was wrong jo. See that. Now if we can get other people within this city to say the same thing it will be a step in the right direction. lol
Cynthia knox October 04, 2012 at 11:11 PM
This is the first time that I have read the comments on the Patch. The level of vitriol, toward the mayor, city workers, "the needy" is truly astonishing. We're facing major layoffs, a tax increase and the top news stories about Peekskill are a murder and the (temporary) closing of the Paramount. People, personalized attacks will not help us . Cynthia
leesther brown October 04, 2012 at 11:57 PM
You reap what you sow.....#bloodsport..
Coach Girl 1971 October 05, 2012 at 02:39 AM
Mayor Foster is terrible, thats true, and the pending layoffs are horrible, but how come no one questions the school districts spending. Dont all you taxpayers realize where your money is going?? Your worried because it may affect the stuff you see on a daily basis riding through town, or down your street. But what about the stuff you dont see, the Superintendent of Schools, the Board of Ed, the school administration, they are the biggest crooks in Peekskill. Un-educating our children, and getting paid alot to do it. People are so quick to comment on city workers "hiding out" while on the job, well these teachers and principals are "hiding out" on the job. Peekskill Schools have one of the lowest test scores in westchester, and one of the highest drop out rates. Maybe if all of you took a trip up to the high school you would see why. There is no control of the kids, they run the school, while security and teachers allow them too. I guess thats one thing that City Hall and Peekskill Schools have in common, they are both run by a bunch of bullies!!!!!!!!
JM October 05, 2012 at 10:43 AM
I agree Cynthia...then again people here attack me, a nobody, simply for my effort on finding a market rate job (yes, odd isn't it?) That anyone at all -- no matter what color, creed, political idealism -- believes Mary Foster purposely and most selfishly wishes to bring harm to this city is beyond astounding to me too. I'm learning though, still being relatively new to the city; yet I know enough to say this -- not one person posting here (other than me) has approached Mary and asked "what can I do to get involved?" That outreach, bordering on eating crow for an appetizer, is just too much effort for them, I have found.
Rasheed Oluwa (Editor) October 05, 2012 at 12:31 PM
RealTime, I'm sure there are other ways to voice your displeasure with Jim Edler than to call him fat and a doofus. Just tone it down some.
RK October 05, 2012 at 01:31 PM
JM - nobody believes the Mayor "purposely" sought to do all this damage, its just she has her own agenda and is blinded at times by it and the results are catastrophic. She wrapped herself up in charrettes, studies, committee meetings, etc. so if the sh** hits the fan, she can always step back and say it was what the {fill in the blanks} wanted - not her! But she is at the helm - that is undeniable. She has always wanted to be a full time mayor, not satisfied with ribbon cuttings & kissing babies. She got rid of the first city manager and then took the rest of her first two years as Mayor to find another one - all the while running the city on her own. The second one - handpicked by her - was fired because he didn't blindly follow her directions. She hasn't even begun to look for another one and now she doesn't even have money in next years budget to cover the position never mind any other position! Again, she will run the city all by herself - Brian H. & the council are puppets who will play to her whims. This is why the city is the way it is. You, yourself, state you are relatively new here - I am not, and I have seen a lot and know a lot about her and believe me, I won't be the one eating crow. As for the school district, you will see all the strides made in the last two years since JJ left come crashing down in the next year - just wait. Their only saving grace is the SRO in the HS but he can't do it alone and won't be there come this new budget.
JM October 05, 2012 at 01:54 PM
RK, I'll give you 50% credit on the post. I'm a Republican and voted for her in part because she came (and not one fellow Republican ever has) to my door to welcome me to this city that charges me $11K a year in property tax. There very likely is many here who could run the city better, I could too but not just yet so hold that thought. And if I did run I seriously doubt my fellow Republicans would support me because I do not buy into these silly agendas. Nonetheless, my charge stands. Not enough residents of Peekskill have gotten involved to make this a better place to live, but plenty fellow residents on both sides of the political fence have decided instead to empower their war chest. As Cynthia says above - that attitude and silo-thinking benefits no one.
leesther brown October 05, 2012 at 03:14 PM
Just spoke with Union Rep and he say's at no time have they talked with Davis or Elder..@Rasheed but Rufus is right...all these folks do is exploit and manipulate,let put this shout out to Elder..Step Aside and let the community that is being served by these workers attend the council meeting they have now posted capacity signs in the chambers and ain't no way in hell are you out of town agitators going to take taxpayers seats...
Silent Majority October 06, 2012 at 02:04 AM
You know whats interesting Ms. Brown? These Folk come from out of town, raze all kinds of crap in the chambers, distort the truth half the time, don't really care bout much but their face being on TV, are out of towners, claim to be for a race of people, (but really, I'm unsure if they are standing up for a race or serving their own purposes and inner issues), dont have a single vote in the City of Peekskill elections, began starting their crap with the prior mayor....shall I continue? And truthfully, are nothing but trolls looking to forward racism, but really look like fools and take up time in City Hall meetings without divulging the TRUE problems of Peekskill (i.e the guns on the streets and the violence that has been occurring over the past summer and has been increasing throughout the years) Honestly, as part of the Silent Majority, Im tired of their SH(*&!!! They have nothing to improve and have never said anything to improve the City just negative to keep US down! to hell with them and their fake leaders!
Silent Majority October 06, 2012 at 02:13 AM
ps... Mr. Oluwa..I think you have outted people w/o realizing it. the person wrote their name under the Tag "disappointed" but you outted them as "Marie." I'm not sure if that was intentional or not but please be careful in the future not to out people like that because in a small town like this many MANY people know to hom you may be referring too. Just use their Pen name. If that can;t be used, then just delete the comment due to "executive privilege" as you are the editor and executive in chief of this great local news site. (please dont take this negatively as that is not my intention and don't mean it in any harm or fashion)
leesther brown October 06, 2012 at 02:26 AM
@Silent you are exactly right...But the "Peacocks" that are following these "Fake Leaders" need not to base their life decisions on the advice from folks that don't have to deal with the results...What needs to happen is for good folks like yourself to come on out and let's show them the road out of Peekskill.......#dontcarewheretheygobutgtfoh..
enoughalready October 09, 2012 at 05:30 AM
I've waited too long to join this fray. First...I find it crazy to think that because you need to cut positions that they must not be needed in the first place. Especially talking about public safety positions. Then again..maybe its real to me because I actually live here..not Putnam Valley, or Mt. Vernon..or anywhere else. Close everything you need to..but I hope they have enough sense to not cut public safety positions. Keep my cops and firefighters...
leesther brown October 09, 2012 at 05:42 AM
Ha Ha Ha..You Ain't Telling Nothing But The Truth.....
Peekskill pride October 14, 2012 at 11:39 PM


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