04 May 2009

NYC Budget Proposal, Take 2 (Deep Breaths)

Mayor Bloomberg's revised 2010 city budget proposal is as grim as his initial set of figures, released back in January. You've probably read about his plans for sales tax increases, health care "cost containment" for unionized city workers (fail!), and layoffs galore. But do you know what's in store for the city's libraries? Answer: a $34 million (22.2%) budget cut, or $13.9 million more than the January proposal (if I calculated correctly).

Gotham Gazette and NY1 put the human toll of this reduction at 943 positions across the three systems. WNYC reports that at the New York Public Library, President Paul LeClerc "is afraid they'll have to cut 415 library jobs, reduce their book purchases by 25 percent and research materials by 35 percent." Whoa! Ouch! Holy f*ck!

According to the Gazette, as the City Council dukes out the details they are "expected to focus on cuts to social services and libraries. [Finance Chairman David] Weprin said this budget would do away with six-day service, which the council has fought to protect for the last year." Lawmakers have until June 30 to approve a budget.

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