© 2022 WRVO Public Media
Your Source for NPR News
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Onondaga County budget deficit leads to 11 layoffs

Ellen Abbott
WRVO News File Photo
Onondaga County Legislature voted on layoffs Monday.

Onondaga County is laying off 11 employees. County lawmakers voted Monday 10-7 to adjust the budget to eliminate $600,000 worth of payroll.

County officials say this is the end of a very difficult budget year. An $8.2 million deficit, created by stagnant sales tax growth and ballooning health care and personnel costs needed to be filled, and the county did it by offering $10,000 buyouts to employees close to retirement. But that still left $600,000 that needed to be cut. So Republican Legislator Pat Kilmartin says a shuffling of jobs and positions led to the 11 layoffs.

"It was based on efficiencies, it was based on new technologies brought into the county, it was based on roles or functions might have become obsolete over time because of new technologies or contracting out for services,” said Kilmartin.

Not all the legislators agreed with that. Seven voted no, citing various reasons. Republican Legislator Casey Jordan just didn’t think all the job shuffling was even handed.

"My personal opinion, I think certain departments were hit disproportionately compared to other departments, and there didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to it,” said Jordan.

Onondaga County Legislature Chairman Ryan McMahon says at the end of the day it puts the county on better fiscal shape for years to come.

“County government’s getting more efficient, it’s getting smaller some departments are getting smaller, but this puts us in a stronger position going forward.”

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.