Mayor repeats his call to slow hiring, cut back

first_imgIn another warning to city department managers, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa renewed his call Thursday to slow hiring as he set cutback goals for all agencies to try to deal with a projected budget deficit. Villaraigosa released a letter to managers late in the day warning again of the financial problems the city faces and singling out the worst spenders in the city: the Office of Finance, City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo and the General Services Department. In separate letters to the departments, the mayor laid out targets of $400,000 in reduced spending for each department as part of a citywide effort. “All city leaders must work together to mitigate this projected deficit by year-end,” Villaraigosa said. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsTo achieve some savings, a managed-hiring plan is being put into effect by the mayor to try to reduce spending by $7 million. “Managed hiring is a prudent action,” Villaraigosa said. “(It) will balance responsible management with the need to maintain our core services to Los Angeles city residents.” In the plan, the mayor and city administrative officer identified savings that can be expected from each department – ranging from $100,000 in the Office of Finance to $2 million at the Los Angeles Police Department and $1.7 million in the Office of Technology. The warning from the mayor is the latest in a series he has issued since the city’s $6.8 billion budget took effect July 1. He has ordered a slowdown in hiring to save money, frozen all new spending and ordered department heads to scale back budgets for the coming year. If spending patterns don’t change, the mayor and other city officials have warned Los Angeles will face as much as a $75 million shortfall when it begins its budget deliberations next year. This week, the city began a survey of residents to try to engage them in the budget process, with an electronic survey available at the city’s Web site, www.lacity.org The mayor earlier this month won a showdown with the City Council over police hiring, with council members agreeing to let the Los Angeles Police Department proceed with plans to hire 780 officers this year. The LAPD has also come under fire for its overtime spending as it is expected to go $13 million over its $84 million overtime budget this year. Police officials have said the amount spent on overtime is the same as it has been for several years. The City Council has agreed to hold off on new spending. Among the programs that could be affected are the city attorney’s gang prosecutor program, expense accounts, fuel purchases, homeless shelters, various anti-gang program, new police and fire stations and workers’ compensation attorneys. City Adminstrative Offiver Karen Sisson has said the city’s problems are due to a dropoff in revenue in a number of city tax categories. [email protected] 213-978-0390160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more