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After hearing different viewpoints, Gordon said, “I would like to thank the council members, the union representatives and the employees for their constructive comments."

Gordon said that he would have preferred to be the city manager a few years ago, when the economy was going strong.  He said that he recognized the hardship that his action might bring on city employees and their families. “This is not easy,” he admitted, acknowledging that it was very difficult making the restructuring decisions, since he knew that there were individual employees, living pay check to pay check and facing foreclosure on their homes.

But Gordon went on to blame the way things had been done in the past and the actions and policies that were followed that avoided cutbacks and layoffs.  “There is a line that is crossed and we’re crossing it.”

Gordon went on to say that what he is proposing "should come as a surprise to no one, since the council was aware of this problem for 7 years."

In ending the meeting, Romero advised all who were concerned “to talk with ML. Right now it is appropriate to continue that dialogue with ML.

The city manager will meet with department managers on Friday, April 8 and bring more information back to the council on April 19, when the restructuring plan might be an item on the council's agenda.

 

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To contact Henrietta J. Burroughs, the author of the above article, email epatoday@epatoday.org.

 

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