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Peekskill Police, Fire Departments to Avoid Layoffs in 2013

A total of 11 Peekskill employees, including two in the police department and one in the fire department, opted into the city's early retirement incentive program.

There will be no layoffs within the police and fire departments next year, according to Peekskill Mayor Mary Foster.

Two uniformed Peekskill police officers in management positions and one person in the Peekskill fire department took the early retirement incentive offered by the city last month.

Another position in the police department that became open due to the death of an officer earlier this month. That position is being left vacant.

Foster said the city firefighters department also agreed to give back a portion of their holiday time, salary and other benefits to the city. That move eliminated the need for another layoff in the department.

Acting City Manager Brian Havranek’s  $35.6 million budget proposal for 2013 would cut 31 full-time jobs, seven which are currently vacant, and nine part-time jobs in the city. The police force would have gone from 57 to 54 officers and the fire department would have lost two positions under Havranek’s proposal.

In all, a total of 11 city employees opted for the incentive. Employees who take the early retirement package receive $500 for every year worked, with a maximum cap of $12,000.

The city’s Common Council is scheduled to show its revisions to  Havranek’s budget during tonight’s meeting. The meeting is scheduled to begin 7:30 p.m. at city hall, located on 840 Main St. in Peekskill.

Collegenurse November 26, 2012 at 03:18 PM
This was a smart move on the part of the employees deciding on early retirement kudos to you! Wake up we, the entire USA, states, counties, municipalities are financial disasters. We need folks to work in the government and make hard decisions and some easy ones...it would be nice if they would do it gratis but now a days that just isn't possible. Vocal unions??? Once again I say unions are a thing of the past, served their purpose now they are sucking the monies out of small towns, and cities with excessive benefits and threats of strikes...look at Hostess worked really well for all of them didn't it NOT...now they are all out of jobs.
Coach Girl 1971 November 27, 2012 at 01:49 AM
Unions are no way a thing of the past, they are needed now more then ever in this country. You must be a wealthy white collar employee or a greedy business owner to feel that way, and I am sure you most certainly have never worked as a part of a union shop. To the " blue collar worker" a union gives a voice to the laborers that are usually not heard at a management level. They stand in solidarity with other members, instead of turning on each other like you "upper level" employees. My grandfather and father were proud union members, and my husband is as well. Excessive benefits and threats of strikes??? I know your not talking about Peekskill employees. If you have so much to say you should know that the DPW is not able to strike even if they wanted to. Its in their contract. You should also love driving on the plowed streets this winter, having your garbage picked up whether its 10 or 100 degrees outside, and not having to clean out your own storm drain. Would you be willing to take some of the work off their hands so they could require less pay or benefits???? How dare you make such an uneducated comment. If your so smart why dont you go to a common council meeting and tell them how to run the city!!!! From one nurse to another, you should know better!!!!
Collegenurse November 27, 2012 at 02:19 PM
coach girl aka nurse...I grew up in a union family so I am well "educated" on the history of unions, the benefits of unions and the ruining of america with unions. Personally as a "professional" nurse I would NEVER work in a union, years ago while forced into 1199 as a nurses aide and made to work the picket line while pregnant for no greater outcome...now would I leave the bedside of patients as a union worker NO...I have utmost respect for workers that must brave the elements..they chose that line of work...just like I did when I started in nursing and worked all different shifts and covered when others could not make it in. Still stand by my union belief and make no excuse for it.
voice of reason November 27, 2012 at 03:04 PM
Coach girl, you say, "They stand in solidarity with other members, instead of turning on each other like you "upper level" employees." Not from my experience. Many (not all) would sell each other out for a pay raise or more OT. Everyone in Peekskill contributes to their health care except "blue collar" employees and they are still holding out for more. The union is antiquated in their thinking. I think tax payers should know that the union is not negotiating in good faith. Instead of striking (which they can't) they inflate a big rat, picket and file multiple, frivolous grievances to bog down the city in paper work and lawyers fees.
voice of reason November 28, 2012 at 03:00 PM
BTW, kudos to the career firemen who care enough for their comrade to give a little back so that he could keep his job. The firemen negotiated in good faith with a realistic view of the economy. They realized that they were not giving back to the city, they were really making a sacrifice to their fellow fire fighter and the taxpayers of Peekskill.

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