Linden Police Agree To Concessions To Avert Layoffs

LINDEN – The city’s police unions agreed to concessions this week to avert potential layoffs, according to a report.

Police will forgo a pay raise in 2013 in order to avoid the layoffs and allow the city to meet its budget. Several officers will retire early, allowing the city to retain the jobs of younger officers who make less money. The concessions and retirements will result in $1.2 million in savings, according to the report.

Linden still has a budget gap of $1.2 million and is considering a separate garbage collection fee to make up the difference and remain within Republican Gov. Chris Christie’s mandated two percent property tax increase cap.

Linden Mayor Richard Gerbounka believes the city will be in a better financial condition next year when employees begin paying part of the costs of their health benefits, according to the report. In addition, city officials anticipate receiving an additional $2.5 million in annual revenue for a planned 42-inch natural gas pipeline under the New Jersey Turnpike and Arthur Kill

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