Mayor Warns of Widespread Layoffs

By Seth Daniel

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Mayor Tom Ambrosino is socking away money this winter into the city’s Rainy Day fund in anticipation of what could be a financially crippling year in city government.

He said that the next year could result in widespread city worker layoffs.

Already on tenuous footing, the city had to use nearly $2 million in reserves this year to make ends meet, and Ambrosino said he is getting early word from Gov. Deval Patrick (D-Milton) that cities and towns should expect a 5-10 percent cut to state aid payments next fiscal year.

“Not only have we started looking at the [upcoming] budget, but on the municipal side of government we’ve stopped hiring,” he said. “We’re not hiring for vacant police and fire positions with the expectation that layoffs are probably inevitable for fiscal year 2012. Depending on the cut we get, they could be widespread.”

Already, two of the five new police officers hired last month from Lawrence have left Revere and gone back to their home city.

Three of them still remain, and the mayor said he would not replace those that have left.

This week, Mayor Ambrosino has proposed to put away several hundred thousand dollars into the city’s Rainy Day Fund for both general government and water & sewer.

The City Council approved those transfers and it appears the City is circling its wagons and getting ready for a financial battle starting in July.

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