Oakland Issues 2,500 Pink Slips To City Employees

OAKLAND (CBS SF) – The city of Oakland issued layoff notices Wednesday to 2,500 employees to cope with the state’s decision to eliminate redevelopment agencies statewide.

However, city officials estimate that only about 200 employees actually will be laid off.

City leaders said they are issuing the notices to most city employees so that the City Council has maximum flexibility in making job cuts.

Mayor Jean Quan and City Administrator Deanna Santana will present their recommendations for layoffs to the council at a special meeting on Jan. 25, and the council is scheduled to act on the recommendations on Jan. 31.

Sworn employees in the city’s police and fire departments are exempt from the layoffs under the terms of their contracts.

Santana said she had to issue the layoff notices in order to comply with the required 10-day notice for employees who could lose their jobs. The layoffs would be effective Feb. 3.

City leaders said Oakland’s budget had been balanced but that the loss of redevelopment funds creates a potential budget gap of $25 million to $30 million.

Santana said in a statement, “This entire situation is regrettable and is forcing us to act out of sequence, without the usual and necessary community and workforce engagement that typically accompanies budget decisions, especially decisions of this magnitude.”

She said, “I recognize the stress and anxiety that this places on the organization and our employees, who are our greatest asset, and who have made significant sacrifices to balance the budget nine times over the past three years.”

But Santana said the city must act in order to comply with a recent California Supreme Court ruling that upheld Gov. Jerry Brown’s decision to eliminate redevelopment agencies.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Bryan

    Wait….so…..but……the media rams down my throat that if we don’t raise taxes they’ll lay off Firefighters, police officers and teachers…..and in this article it says they wont touch the aforementioned and the money will go mainly to public schools….I’m so confused!?!
    This is one of HUNDREDS of tax dollar-sucking wasteful bureaucratic nightmares in this state.
    Do not be fooled by the media….no one wants to cut public safety and education….we want to cut paper-pushing, pension-draining, over-paid schmucks and the programs they’re protected under.
    Nice work Jerry.

  • Milan Moravec

    Employee loyalty prevents employability in the job market. As businesses, higher education, states, counties, cities stumble through the recession some are in a phase of creative disassembly. University of California Berkeley Chancellor Birgeneau ($450,000 salary) and his $7 million outside consultants use “Operational Excellence (OE)” to fire 2,000 in 2011. UC Berkeley tuition/fees doubled. OE removes inefficiencies created by Birgeneau’s 8 years of senior management and names them “savings”.

    Yet many cling to an old assumption: the implied, unwritten management-employee contract. Management promised work, upward progress for employees fitting in, employees accepted lower wages, performing in prescribed ways, sticking around. Longevity was good employer-employee relations; turnover a dysfunction. None of these assumptions apply in the 21 century economy. Businesses, universities, public institutions can no longer guarantee careers, even if they want to. Managements paralyzed themselves with a strategy of “success brings successes” rather than “successes brings failure’ and are now forced to break implied contract with employees – a contract nurtured by management that future can be controlled.

    Jettisoned employees are discovering that hard won knowledge earned while loyal is no longer desired in employment markets. What contract can employers, employees make with each other?

    The central idea is simple, powerful: job is a shared partnership.
    • Employers, employees face financial conditions together; longevity of partnership depends on how well customers, constituencies needs are met.
    • Neither management nor employee has future obligation to the other.
    • Organizations train people.
    • Employees create security they really need – skills, knowledge that creates employability in 21st century economies
    • The management-employee loyalty partnership can be dissolved without either party considering the other a traitor.

    Sustained employability in the 21st century economy is security. Your employability: have you checked your employable in the job market?

  • Mark Beers

    hope quan gets her pink slip soon – ineffective with no power to fight for our city – worthless.

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