Friday, 24 June 2011 00:00
Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano announced on June 13 that in an effort to reduce the costs of running Nassau County government and protect homeowners from a property tax increase, he has plans that achieve $32 million in annual re-occurring employee-related budget savings. The plan, he stated, includes $10.6 million in savings from 130 employee layoffs; $9 million from redeploying police from desks to patrol; $7 million from the elimination of additional positions; and $5.3 million in savings from 54 employees participating in the Voluntary Separation Incentive Program. After personnel reductions in July 2011, he said the county will have 1,200 fewer positions than 2009 budgeted-levels – the last year of the previous administration. Nassau County, Mangano said, is now operating with the lowest level workforce since the 1950s and that this is just the first-round of employee cost-cutting actions he will take in 2011.
“My administration has worked tirelessly to rein in government spending and protect residents from a property tax increase,” said Mangano. “I advised County unions that labor savings were necessary for 2011 and that if they were not achieved voluntarily, I would have no choice but to achieve these savings with layoffs and other actions. Because additional concessions have not been volunteered in 2011, it is necessary to issue formal layoffs and redeployment of police. Simply put, if everyone gave a little, no one would give a lot.”
For the past 10 months, County Executive Mangano warned Nassau’s unions that there would be voluntary concessions, ordered concessions or employees would be laid off. Upon passage of the Legislature, the 130 layoffs announced will take effect July 1. This first-round of layoffs saves taxpayers $10.6 million, including:
• $3.6 million in the Department of Assessment by laying off 43 employees;
• $1.5 million in the Assessment Review Commission by laying off 16 employees;
• $1.2 million in the County Attorney’s Office by laying off 13 employees;
• $1.5 million in the Informational Technology Department by laying off 12 employees;
• $1.7 million in the Department of Parks, Recreation and Museums by laying off 25 employees; and
• $1 million in the Department of Social Services by laying off 21 employees in the juvenile detention center.
In an effort to reduce the workforce prior to issuing employee layoff notices, Mangano implemented a Voluntary Separation Incentive Program for employees. Since its inception in April, 54 employees have participated in the separation program. The County will save $5.3 million by not filling the vacancies created by these retirements and will extend the program for a two-week period, the county executive stated.
Mangano announced he has implemented a Police Redeployment Plan to save taxpayers over $9 million. This Police Redeployment Plan restructures the Nassau County Police Department by redeploying 166 employees, including 109 officers, 19 supervisors and 38 civilian employees. Components of the Police Redeployment Plan include:
• The Department will maintain one Problem Orientated Policing (POP) officer per precinct. Commanding Officers will be directed to attend community meetings and will assign supervisors as liaisons to villages and community groups. Additionally, the Department will use Directed Patrols to address problems that have been previously addressed by POP officers.
• The police communications operators currently handling clerical duties will be assigned to the operation floor to reduce overtime while 15 newly hired clerks will perform clerical work.
• The equivalent of eight full-time Police Service Aides in the Communication Bureau Case Intake Unit will be reassigned to Patrol.
• Hire 14 Ambulance Medical Technician’s (AMTs) to work in the Emergency Ambulance Bureau.
• Through the redeployment of police officers in highway patrol, motor carrier, SET and K9, the plan places cops on the street when officers fail to show up to work. Should all officers be present, administrators will have the flexibility to redeploy personnel to these units.
• Redeployment of police officers from the Records Bureau, Applicant Investigations Unit, Police Academy, Community Affairs and Public Information Office to patrol in various precincts.
• Reduction of supervisors in the Applicant Investigations Unit, Special Units, Police Academy, and Medical Administrative Office.