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UPDATE: CITY LAYOFFS ANNOUNCED

Submitted by on 1, May 6, 2009 – 1:45 pm7 Comments

2Updated 3:45 p.m.

City management announced today that they are cutting 64 positions, including 40 jobs that are currently filled.

Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant, who has been talking to department heads about the anticipated layoffs for the last month, said the move should put the city on sounds financial footing for the next two years.

“The issue is, there’s absolutely no way of living within our budget and paying our fixed charge bills without cutting staff. It just is not possible,” Gallant said, adding that the city has made all the other cuts it can.

She said the city has a structural deficit that needed to be fixed to meet sustained fiscal challenges posed by economic woes at every level of government.

The city’s Planning and Building Department is taking the biggest hit, with 16 workers facing layoffs – including the city’s planning and building director – and two vacant positions to be cut. The list includes four planners, four building inspectors, a code compliance officer, two permit techs, three intake clerks and an executive assistant, in addition to the department’s director.

Public works will lose 11 positions, three of them filled and eight vacant. A dozen jobs that had previously been cut from golf were also on the list.

The fire department is losing 11 positions, six of them filled, and Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant said the city will permanently shut Fire Station 5 at Alameda Point. The new maximum daily department staffing will be 24 instead of the current 27, and could be as low as 22.

The people facing pink slips include three fire captains, one fire apparatus operator and a firefighter.

Gallant said the fire cuts were based on a consultant’s report on the fire department that is due out next week.

The police department is losing seven positions – a lieutenant, two sergeants and four officers – all of them vacant.

The city manager, city clerk, finance and the library will not face cuts, nor will Alameda Municipal Power, which faced cuts when it sold its telecom business in November. Recreation and parks doesn’t have any cuts listed, though some workers may get bumped by more senior workers in golf who are facing layoffs.

Human resources staff will be working out exactly who will get pink slips this week, and notifications will be handed out next Friday, May 15. Employees will get two weeks pay and two additional months of health care.

More to come … in the meantime, here’s the full list (V for vacant, F for filled):

MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL:

N/A

CITY MANAGER:

N/A

CITY ATTORNEY:

Assistant city attorney I (F)

CITY CLERK:

N/A

ALAMEDA MUNICIPAL POWER:

N/A

DEVELOPMENT SERVICES:

Development manager (2) (V,F)

FINANCE:

N/A

FIRE:

Division chief (V)

Fire captain (4) (3F, 1V)

Fire apparatus operator (3) (1F, 2V)

Firefighter (2) (1F, 1V)

Fire/building code compliance officer (V)

GOLF: (cuts previously ID’d for 12/31/09)

Equipment operator (3) (F)

Golf & park team leader (2) (F)

Golf course utility worker (2) (F)

Equipment mechanic (F)

Golf & park maintenance worker (4) (F)

HUMAN RESOURCES:

Administrative management analyst (F)

Administrative tech I (F)

LIBRARY:

N/A

PLANNING AND BUILDING:

Plan check engineer (V)

Senior combination building inspector (V)

Supervising planner (2) (F)

Planner III (2) (F)

Combination building inspector (4) (F)

Fire building code compliance officer (F)

Permit tech III (2) (F)

Intermediate clerk (3) (F)

Executive assistant (F)

Planning and Building Director (F)

POLICE:

Police lieutenant (V)

Police sergeant (2) (V)

Police officer (4) (V)

PUBLIC WORKS:

Public works supervisor (V)

Associate civil engineer (2) (V)

Maintenance worker I (3) (V)

Maintenance worker III (2) (V)

Administrative services coordinator (F)

Transportation coordinator (F)

Senior draftsperson (F)

RECREATION AND PARKS:

N/A

7 Comments »

  • Neal_J says:

    Kudos to the City Manager for making these difficult decisions. And it is certainly a sad day whenever anyone is poised to lose their job – sympathies to the families of all those affected.

    It's also unfortunate that the cuts largely MISS the highest-paid city employees (i.e., those with total comp & benefits exceeds $200,000). It appears that only one such currently-filled position is being cut – the Planning & Building Director.

    Moreover, of the 40 currently-filled positions that are to be terminated, the average employee salary & benefits is about $92,000. Too bad for the little guys.

  • Jill says:

    This may be a blessing in disguise regarding the Building Department. That department needs a shake up so that everyone who works there gives the same answers and treats everyone equally. Existing staff gives contractors whom they know a lot of slack and makes everyone else jump through ridiculous hoops.

  • eyes open and watchi says:

    Sadly, it doesn't look like the decision makers in Building are affected by the layoffs so expecting the cronyism that this department embraces to be affected is not likely. Watch for ongoing efforts at empire building from these folks. This is yet another area where Council seems to hope the problem will go away if they ignore it long enough.

  • eyes open and watchi says:

    Yes, I believe she is as well. However, I don't believe she is a decision-maker in the Building Dept.

  • Simpson says:

    So eyes open, if the Director is not the decision maker in the Building Dept who is?

  • K. Sanderberg says:

    Since several of the positions that are being cut were declared to be unfunded in the last published budget, how are you saving by just crossing out the titles? You're not. This is how Council was duped before. How many employees are being transferred or having salaries redistributed to other departments to make it look like budgets are being reduced?

    Other things to think about: if the City unloaded Telecom, why is the marketing manager still on staff? It's not like there's competition for the electric utility. Why are there so many front-line positions being cut instead of managers and analysts? Hasn't Council been saying for years the organization needs to be flattened?

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