Johnson: More Cuts to Police, Fire Unless Unions Bargain

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The mayor campaigned on increasing funds for police and fire.  And those unions are some of his strongest supporters.  But Johnson says while he’ll always fight for public safety …
Johnson: “I can tell you, if you’re talking $40 to $50 million, every department – no one’s gonna be immune from those cuts.” 
Unless, he says, the city’s labor unions give up their cost-of-living adjustments.  But police union vice president Mark Tyndale says those negotiations haven’t gone beyond informal talks yet.  Tyndale acknowledges some of his members could lose their jobs if there’s no deal, but he says there’s some reluctance to reopen contract negotiations.
Tyndale: “At this point, though, I do believe that a good portion of our members are starting to realize that this is a real financial crisis, and the city isn’t making this up.” 
The city council will hear just how bad Sacramento’s budget situation is tomorrow at a special workshop with city staff.