Reporting Steve Large
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – City council members are moving forward with a plan to slash public safety jobs and services to help close a $39 million deficit.
Officials had to set up two overflow rooms for attendees to watch the proceedings after hundreds showed up to speak against the restructuring plan that would lay off at least 200 people, many of whom would be police officers, firefighters and parks department employees.
In a 5-4 vote, the Sacramento City Council voted to accept the plan to trim $12 million from the police budget and $9 million from the fire budget. The final vote on the cuts will take place before the new fiscal year begins on July 1.
About 80 of the layoffs would be sworn police officers and 60 other layoffs would be firefighters.
Over the past five years of budget reductions, Sacramento has already laid off 200 people and eliminated 900 positions in total — about one in five city employees.
In a tweet Tuesday night, the Sacramento Police Department said the City Council’s decision would result in more than 150 layoffs.
“Although we will no longer be able to provide the level of service, we are committed to continuing to provide quality service when we do respond” said Chief Rick Braziel.
Sacramento is far from the only city facing similar cuts. Including local and state governments across the country, about 100,000 public sector jobs are expected to be eliminated in the next three months.