Deadline For Labor Deal: April 1, Or Layoffs

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Howard Glaser, director of state operations, testified this morning at a joint hearing of the state Legislature that the process of moving ahead with 9,800 layoffs will begin April 1, if a labor agreement with unions isn’t reached before then.

Most union contracts expire April 1, the first of the 2011-12 fiscal year, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has proposed going ahead with the layoffs if a new contract isn’t adopted. He is also proposing a one-year wage freeze for state workers.

Glaser wouldn’t say how long it would take for the layoffs to go into effect.

“Our drop dead date for when we must begin planning for layoffs is April 1. If we don’t have an agreement in place by April 1, we will begin planning for reductions at that point. When those reductions will take place is a consequence of many factors,” Glaser said.

Glaser conducted a slide-show presentation to make the case that public-worker salaries have outpaced the private sector. In his testimony, Glaser, a long-time adviser to Cuomo who worked with him at the HUD, said the average compensation and benefits for state employees has increased 14 percent during the past three years. He said in the private sector, wages alone dropped 8.8 percent between 2008 to 2009.

Unions, though, disputed Glaser’s claim that wages for state employees averaged $67,200, above the average New York income of $46,957.

Fran Turner, legislative and political action director for the Civil Service Employees Association, said the average CSEA salary is $40,000 a year. She and Public Employees Federation president Kenneth Brynien warned that Cuomo’s budget would lead to many more layoffs than the 9,800 because of cuts in aid to schools, health care and other services.

“We have a bad budget as is, and even besides these 9,800 layoffs,” Turner said. “You’re going to see layoffs across the state, in the health-care industry, in education, in human services, in local governments.”

Here’s Glaser’s testimony.

Testimony From Howard Glaser

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2 Comments

  1. the consultant on

    its not so much their pay..its their benefits over time

    http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/27/3431893/editorial-the-clock-is-ticking.html

    the unions should recognize that layoff’s serve no useful purpose and only hurt
    those with jobs…taking cuts in pay pensions and contributing to health care preserves
    jobs for future union workers…new york is facing the same crisis as in other states
    mitch daniels in indiana took action and solved his problem.other governors are about
    to do the same..

  2. CSEA isn't too sharp on

    Fran Turner is being dishonest when citing CSEA’s lower number. That is not the number to which Glazer refers and she should not think the public is so stupid as to be fooled by her apples to oranges data.