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PR- 437-08
November 5, 2008


Proposes Aggressive Actions to Address $4 Billion Budget Gap through FY 2010

Details Specifics of 2.5 Percent and 5 Percent Spending Cuts for FY 2009 and FY 2010

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today presented a November Financial Plan update.  As part of the budget presentation, the Mayor announced that the City faces a cumulative $4 billion budget gap for FY 2009 and FY 2010 and detailed a series of difficult measures to reduce the deficit: $1.5 billion in savings achieved through spending reductions and other measures, rescinding the 7 percent property tax reduction immediately, and not issuing the $400 property tax rebate.  The Mayor’s proposals will substantially reduce the budget deficit, but will not eliminate the budget gap for FY 2010, which will still have a $1.3 billion shortfall.  In January, the Mayor will present the preliminary FY 2010 budget and financial plan.

“When we proposed the budget for this fiscal year, we offered strong warnings about the potential hazards ahead of us,” said Mayor Bloomberg.  “Our concern for future vulnerability prompted significant budget cuts over the past 18 months. Our earlier forecasts called for sharp decreases in revenue, but as we all know economic conditions have since deteriorated dramatically, forcing us to lower our projections even further.  The gravity of the budget situation requires us to make hard choices that will not be popular with everyone.  But they’re the right ones to see us through these very difficult economic times and they will help speed our recovery, while continuing to keep our streets safe and clean and keep improving our schools.  We will not let our city return to the dark days of the 1970’s when the fiscal crisis all but destroyed our quality of life.”

Agency Spending Reduction

  • Reducing the size of the City workforce by over 3,000 employees, approximately 600 through layoffs and the remainder through attrition. 

  • Reducing peak headcount at the New York City Police Department by 1,000.  Two police academy classes were planned for 2009.  The peak headcount reduction will be achieved by canceling the January 2009 academy class.  The July 2009 police academy class will add 2,000 new officers to the force as will subsequent classes.

  • Eliminating nighttime shifts at five engine companies in firehouses where ladder companies will remain fully staffed.  Additionally, the firefighting training academy for probationary firefighters will be reduced from 23 weeks to 18 weeks.

  • Reducing city funds to the Department of Education’s by $181 million this year and $385 million next year, focusing largely on administrative costs and minimizing impact on schools. This will include elimination of 475 positions producing a 6.55 percent reduction in centrally managed funds.  These actions will allow schools-based-budgets to only be reduced by 1.3 percent through non-personnel reductions.

  • Cutting authorized headcount in the Mayor’s Office by 10 percent, through not filling vacancies and attrition.  The authorized headcount will be reduced by 52 positions.

  • Saving $20 million through fleet reduction, maintenance efficiencies, inventory review, lifecycle management, joint fuel purchasing agreements, and “right sizing” of the City’s vehicle fleet.  Reductions in vehicle miles traveled by city vehicles will not only save money, but will also further reduce the city's carbon footprint.

  • Reducing 127 Child Protective Supervisor Positions that are currently vacant and increasing child care co-pays.  ACS will preserve its core mission of protecting children and will preserve the essential safety reforms enacted during the past three years.  The reductions are focused on administrative areas in order to preserve manageable caseloads, continue investigations, and provide the services and necessary oversight for children in foster care.

  • Cutting subsidies to libraries and cultural institutions by 2.5 percent this year and 5 percent next year.  The reduction of funding will amount to an $11 million reduction in city funds for cultural institutions and the reduction of average library hours from 6 days to 5.5 days per week.

Revenue Increases

  • Rescinding the 7% property tax reduction immediately, this will generate $576 million in additional revenue.

  • Not issuing the $400 property tax rebate, this will generate $256 million in additional revenue.

  • Increasing certain fees and fines, this will generate $123 million in additional revenue.

Prudent Actions Which Prevented Larger Deficits

Previous budget surpluses were used to stabilize the City’s budget in future years.
Surplus funds generated in FY 2007 totaling $4.6 billion were used to help close budget gaps in FY 2008, FY 2009 and FY 2010.  The City also paid down early over $1 billion of debt which was due in FY 2009 and FY 2010. 

Out Year Gaps

The Mayor also announced today that if his budget modifications are adopted, New York City is still facing budget gaps of approximately $1.3 billion in FY 2010, $5.0 billion in FY 2011 and $4.9 billion FY 2012.   


Stu Loeser / Marc La Vorgna   (212) 788-2958

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