It’s already ‘Parks & Wreck’ and it may get a whole lot worse!
Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday the budget-battered Parks Department is in line for additional cuts even as the existing pare-downs have left many city green spaces covered in trash.
“It’s going to be a struggle to keep them as clean as we want them to be, if we have to go through with more layoffs,” Hizzoner told reporters during his daily press briefing.
De Blasio has threatened to lay off up to 22,000 city employees in October unless municipal unions agree to $1 billion in labor savings as the city’s already bloated. budget ran into a months-long coronavirus shutdown that has left the city facing a $9 billion deficit.
For months, de Blasio has campaigned for federal relief or emergency borrowing authority from lawmakers in Albany as ways to avoid budget pain, but there’s been little sympathy from either the feds or Democratic state legislative leaders who called the borrowing request irresponsible.
That does not appear to have swayed the mayor’s thinking on how to dig out from under the financial burden the city faces.
“We’ve all I think come to the realization not going to be federal stimulus right now which is really sad to say,” de Blasio said. “We’ve got to focus on getting long term borrowing from Albany so we can avert the kinds of layoffs that would make the situation you talk about even worse.”
Budget writers have already slashed $84 million from the Parks Department budget for 2021, which axed the agency’s usual plans to hire 1,700 seasonal workers to help keep city parks and recreation facilities clean during the high-use summer months.
The Post highlighted the dramatic toll of the cuts have already taken on Monday with a front-page story under the headline ‘PARKS & WRECK.’
The Parks Department was one of the agencies that bore the brunt of the cuts in Gotham’s recently passed $88.2 billion budget.
City Hall also hit other trash programs with the budget ax — cleaving more than $21 million for litter basket pickup from the Sanitation Department’s budget.
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