Thursday, July 1, 2010

City Council Passes 2011 Budget

With a vote of 48-1 the City Council passed a $63 billion municipal budget for fiscal year 2011 late Tuesday night.

“This year’s budget, in many ways, is reflective of what New York City is known for — resilience and perseverance,” said Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan). “I remain confident that after this year’s hardships, our City will emerge out of this down- turn fiscally healthier and stronger than ever.”

The plan calls for the closing of up to 30 sen- ior centers and layoffs for at least 2,000 municipal workers and reduction in library hours. However, the new plan includes no tax increases and $36 million to prevent any fire engine companies from closing.

Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village), chair of the Fire and Criminal Justice committee, applauded the city’s de- cision not to close any of the fire engine houses that were on the chopping block.

“When we started this fight, 62 fire companies were on the chopping block – now all will remain open,” said Crowley. “The City has negotiated a budget that will restore the $37 million to keep our fire companies open. Thanks to the efforts of firefighters, elected officials, community leaders and thousands of New Yorkers from every borough, we won this fight for our fire protection.”

Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) also said she was happy with the outcome.
“Considering how bad everything was, the Mayor and the council did a good job,” she said. “I thought it was going to be a lot worse than it was. The process this time was won- derful and I’m most proud about being able to restore funds to the area of seniors and children’s services.”

The lone councilmember to vote against the budget was Charles Barron (D-Brooklyn). The fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30.

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