Riverbank offers plan to avoid layoffs

RIVERBANK -- The city can balance its budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1 without layoffs if city workers agree to 12 furlough days and give up a cost of living raise.

Riverbank is facing a $190,000 deficit to its $6.9 million general fund budget for the 2010-11 spending year. The general fund pays for basic services such as law enforcement.

City Manager Rich Holmer says the city could close the deficit if its 56 workers take 12 furlough days and the employees in the midmanagers bargaining group give up their 4 percent cost of living increase for the upcoming budget year.

The city's seven executive managers and its rank-and-file employees are not entitled to the increase.

City officials will talk about this and other fiscal issues tonight during a City Council budget workshop. The council will make no decisions.

The executive managers have agreed to the 12 furlough days. No agreements have been reached with the bargaining groups for the midmanagers and rank-and-file employees, but talks continue.

The budget workshop will start at 5:30 p.m. in the community center, 3600 Santa Fe St.

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