Tacoma City Council could delay layoffs for 30 days

A resolution on Tuesday’s Tacoma City Council agenda could delay laying off nearly 100 police officers and firefighters for 30 days.

On Dec. 6, interim Tacoma City Manager Rey Arellano presented a budget proposal aimed to close $23 million of a projected $31 million general fund budget deficit by eliminating 167 positions from city government. A wide variety of departments would face layoffs under the plan, including police, fire, public works, human rights and human services, community and economic development, permitting, finance, human resources, municipal court, public assembly facilities, information technology, and legal. But public safety services would be hit hardest, as evidenced by the number of police officers and firefighters who packed City Hall Tuesday night for a public hearing on the budget proposal. Indeed, the Tacoma Police Department would shed 56 positions, including 52 patrol officers. The Tacoma Fire Department would cut 44 positions, including 42 firefighters, and close four engine companies and two fire stations.

If the resolution (No. 38391) is approved, it would authorize Arellano to delay the layoffs and begin an independent financial review of the city’s projected revenues and expenditures for the years 2012-2014. That review would need to be completed within 30 days.

City Council is scheduled to vote on the resolution during its meeting on Tues., Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. in City Council Chambers on the first floor of the Tacoma Municipal Building located at 747 Market Street. For a copy of the complete agenda and meeting materials, visit http://cms.cityoftacoma.org/cityclerk/Files/CityCouncil/Agendas/2011-FullAgendas/Full20111213.pdf .

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What would Tacoma look like with 100 fewer police officers, firefighters? — http://tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2081915&more=0

Tacoma budget cuts would impact police, fire services — http://tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2081465&more=0

Tacoma City Council to discuss layoffs, budget deficit today — http://www.tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2080902&more=0

Public meetings Tuesday tackle Tacoma’s budget — http://tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2079650&more=0

Tacoma City Council resumes budget discussion Nov. 1 — http://www.tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2060641&more=0

Tacoma’s Money Crunch: City Hall perspectives on Tacoma’s $26M budget gap –http://tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2058879&more=0

Tacoma faces $26M budget gap — http://www.tacomadailyindex.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=88&cat=23&id=2058379&more=0