Budget Shortfall Could Lead To Police Layoffs In Linden

LINDEN – City officials and Linden’s police union haven’t been able to reach an agreement to avoid the potential layoffs of up to 31 officers, according to a Union News Daily report.

City officials want police to agree to delay a 3.95 percent raise until July 2014, but are not willing to make other concessions, according to the report. Firefighters agreed to accept cost-cutting measures without receiving other concessions.

Linden had been tapping surplus funds to meet annual budgetary needs since 2007, but that money is all but gone. With Gov. Chris Christie’s two percent cap on property tax increases, officials are forced to make cuts to the city payroll to balance this year’s budget.

Retirements could reduce the number of officers laid off, since veteran officers make more money than newer ones.

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