Mayor Joseph P. Ganim
For Immediate Release For More Information:
June 22, 2016 Av Harris (203) 814-7992
Mayor Ganim Seeks To Avoid Another Round of Municipal Employee Layoffs
City Deadline Fast Approaching to Close $20 Million Deficit By End of Fiscal Year June 30; Without Agreement of $40,000,000 in Labor Concessions, Additional Layoffs May Be Unavoidable.
Bridgeport, CT – Mayor Joe Ganim today is seeking to avoid more layoffs in Bridgeport city government by agreeing to $4,000,000 in salary freezes and other concessions with city labor unions. The concessions are necessary to achieve the savings needed to close the current budget deficit and end the fiscal year in balance on June 30, 2016. Mayor Ganim’s administration has worked diligently to close the $20,000,000 budget gap it inherited upon taking office on December 1, 2015 – taking steps such as separating nearly 100 employees from municipal service, reorganizing city departments to eliminate unnecessary positions, instituting unpaid furloughs and salary freezes for appointed officials, restructuring city debt, and working with uniformed services to reduce overtime in the Bridgeport Fire and Police Departments.
"This has been a tough fiscal year for the city of Bridgeport and this administration wants to avoid another round of layoffs if we can,” said Bridgeport Chief Administrative Officer John Gomes. “We have been in negotiations with organized labor for months, but time is growing short to close our current fiscal year deficit. We are willing to be as flexible as possible but the bottom line is we need more savings. Separating employees is always a last resort and a difficult decision, but one we are ready to make if we have no other options.”
In addition to the cost savings measures previously enumerated, the city of Bridgeport also offered early retirement incentives to any city employees who achieved at least 15 years of municipal service. So far, some 51 municipal employees have taken advantage of this incentive program and have notified the city of Bridgeport of their intent to retire by June 30th. The savings realized by these early retirements will impact the following fiscal year starting on Friday July 1, 2016 as some positions may be eliminated or not refilled.