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The Saratogian Newsroom blog, complete with thoughts and commentary from our newsroom staff and regular posts on happenings around town.

Monday, October 12

Next on the chopping block

It's a holiday out there, although it is not a holiday in here. It might as well be. It seems that whenever the government takes a break, it leads a slow news day. Although the chance to catch up on some email and clean my computer's desk top. I gave a half-hearten thought to also cleaning my physical desktop, but that one never manifested itself in action. So it goes.

I did spend sometime reviewing Commissioner of Finance Kenneth Ivins Jr.'s proposed 2010 comprehensive budget, and noticed one job not currently on the chopping block is the Director of Public Works, currently held by Billy McTygue. The only reason this is noteworthy is that the job was one of a few slated for elimination during the mid-year budget amendment cycle, and was saved by some last-minute wrangling. The post pays an annual salary of about $100,000.

While some people (including Independence candidate Ed Miller) feel that this position is underutilized, others feel that it is not necessary in a department with a full time deputy commissioner. Of course, there is also no escaping the assertion by some -- whether or not it's accurate -- that the job was created as patronage for McTygue by his brother Tommy, the former Commissioner of Public Works.

I don't know exactly where Commissioner Scirocco stands on the necessity of the director position, although he did choose not to eliminate McTygue in the mid-year amendment process. As the budget moves forward, this is one position that I will be keeping a very close eye on.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The job was not created for Billy MCtygue,he took the job from then director of public works Mr Joe O'neill sr. who went out on disablity,also I might add Billy Mctygue has more credentials for the job than his predecessor had,how anybody in their right mind could occupy the position of comm. of public works and continually ignore somebody whose forgot more than you know is beyond me.

October 12, 2009 at 7:14 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CUT IT! Sorry Billy, time to retire.

October 13, 2009 at 8:55 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're right, billy has forgotten a lot. He's forgot about pollution standards, anything to do with infrastructure and how not to cut the throat of his boss.

October 13, 2009 at 9:40 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Deputy Commisioner of public Works will retire in December. Skippy has mentioned Ms. Buckley as his Deputy appointment if he wins. Therefore Bill McTygue will be needed to administer the Department of Public Works. Why doesn't the Saratogian ask all candidates who they
will name as Deputies if elected?

October 14, 2009 at 9:59 AM 
Blogger Andrew J. Bernstein said...

anon 9:59 a.m.: Can you substantiate the rumor you just mentioned?

Also, we are asking candidates who they would names as their deputy as part of our candidate interviews. Thus far we have met with John Franck, Ed Miller, and Peter Martin.

Franck said he would keep his deputy Michele Boxley, if (when) re-elected). Mr. Martin said he did not yet know, and Miller said only that it would not be "someone named Design or McTygue."

We will continue to ask candidates this question as we move closer to election day.

October 14, 2009 at 2:32 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you had the oppertunity to ask Mr. Ivens how he came up with the number of layoffs for each department? Will the Department of Public Works be able to maintain it's current workload with a reduced number of employees, or will they be forced to call people in on overtime? Additionally, I looked at current Police and Fire Department staffing levels and I'm confused how they could layoff 7 Fireman and 7 Police officers, when the Police department has well over 70 members, while the fire department has a little over 50 members. Shouldn't the cuts be proportionate to the size of their respective departments?

October 14, 2009 at 3:15 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew,word from the county there is a $400,000 sewer tax increase and scirrocco is keeping a lid on it until after the election,how can he get away with this.. ask him!Whats' he afraid of?

October 14, 2009 at 7:04 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew, Let's not overlook the fact that the responsibility to mmanage and deliver services by both Public Works and Public Safety Departments rests solely in the hands of the respective commissioners. Ivins gave the warning regarding revenue shortfall and neither one took any meaningful action to contain overtime or operating costs. Ivins was forced to cut the budget.It is up to the commissioners WHERE to make the cuts. By abdicating their responsibility they are trying to make Ivins the fall guy. A good trick if you can get away with it. Hope the voter wises up and gets rid Kim and Scirocco, the two worst and most inept council members in recent history.

October 15, 2009 at 8:31 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

times are tough all over, i jut heard a rumor that the largest construction company in SS just laid off over 30% of the workers. why wouldn't the Saratogian do a story on the private sectors and how business stinks for us?

October 15, 2009 at 8:38 AM 
Blogger demroc said...

would the city have anything to do with the county sewer bill?

October 15, 2009 at 7:00 PM 

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