Faced with a deficit of nearly $4 million, the City of Plattsburgh has laid off 7 municipal employees and furloughed another two dozen.
Mayor Colin Read said the moves were necessary, but won’t solve the problem.
“The steps we’re taking right now aren’t going to fill that hole,” he said. “It’s going to help fill that hole, it’s going to put us in a better position to dig deeper if we have to. But it does by no means solve the whole extent of the problem.”
Read said the furloughed workers will return to work as soon as Gov. Andrew Cuomo ends New York’s stay-at-home directive, which was recently extended until May 15. Read said he wouldn’t be surprised if that gets extended.
“Once that order is lifted, we can start bringing back some of our workers that would normally work in this building, work with customers etc, and obviously they cant do that from home,” Read said. “We’ve got about 40 employees in total working from home, some more effectively than others. Some jobs don’t let people work from home, and those people are essentially idle.”
Read may bring more people on the payroll, he said, as needs change.
“We do a lot of seasonal work, for instance road repairs occurs at a certain parts of the season,” he said. “And as the budget improves, and if we need to bring them back, we’ll bring them back. “