Should city council and mayor serious...

Should city council and mayor seriously examine outsourcing government services

Created by Rob Palmieri on Mar 25, 2013

155 votes

Click on an option to vote

Yes, its worth weighing options

No, they should reduce services

Utica finances are fine, just raise taxes

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Lidia

New York, NY

#1 Mar 25, 2013
Why not? They can investigate it, and see if there is merit
Jenifer

New York, NY

#2 Mar 25, 2013
They can look into it and see if there is merit.
Ralph

New York, NY

#3 Mar 26, 2013
The county sheriffs can patrol utica at a lower cost
Not happening

Camillus, NY

#4 Mar 26, 2013
Ralph wrote:
The county sheriffs can patrol utica at a lower cost
they don't get enough as it is why would and why should they agree to patrol this dump with out getting a raise. Plus they would need 140 more guys
Sheriff

Columbus, OH

#5 Mar 27, 2013
The Sheriff's department candle cover Utica. Uticans already pay county taxes which pays sheriff's salary.
Weighing options

New Britain, CT

#6 Mar 30, 2013
How much would the savings be?
Utica34

New York, NY

#7 Mar 30, 2013
Palmier I. Should have the city comptroller do the math
Samantha colisimo

New York, NY

#8 Mar 30, 2013
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/business/20 ...

By DAVID STREITFELD
While many communities are fearfully contemplating extensive cuts, Maywood says it is the first city in the nation in the current downturn to take an ax to everyone.
The school crossing guards were let go. Parking enforcement was contracted out, City Hall workers dismissed, street maintenance workers made redundant. The public safety duties of the Police Department were handed over to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
At first, people in this poor, long-troubled and heavily Hispanic city southeast of Los Angeles braced for anarchy.
Senior citizens were afraid they would be assaulted as they walked down the street. Parents worried the parks would be shut and their children would have nowhere to safely play. Landlords said their tenants had begun suggesting that without city-run services they would no longer feel obliged to pay rent.

The apocalypse never arrived. In fact, it seems this city was so bad at being a city that outsourcing — so far, at least — is being viewed as an act of municipal genius.

“We don’t want to be the model for other cities to lay off their employees,” said Magdalena Prado, a spokeswoman for the city who works on contract.“But our residents have been somewhat pleased.”

That includes Mayor Ana Rosa Rizo, who was gratified to see her husband get a parking ticket on July 1, hours after the Police Department had been disbanded. The ticket was issued by enforcement clerks for the neighboring city of Bell, which is being paid about $50,000 a month by Maywood to perform various services.

Maywood, which covers slightly more than one square mile, is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. The official population of 30,000 is believed to considerably understate the actual total of about 50,000.

It has some of the ills that plague other cities. Property taxes, a primary source of revenue, have declined to $900,000 from $1.2 million in 2007. Sales taxes have also dropped. But Maywood’s biggest problem by far has been its police department.

There are $19 million in claims pending against the police, which made it effectively impossible for the city to get insurance for any of its employees. If Maywood did not dismiss the municipal work force, officials said, bankruptcy would have been the only option. The total number of laid-off employees, including those in the Police Department, was about 60, city officials said.

The budget for the Police Department last year was nearly $8 million, more than half of Maywood’s revenues. The contract with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will cost about half of that. Insurance premiums for the city have fallen to $200,000 from $1 million.

The deputies have already engendered good will, Councilman Aguirre said, by cracking down on a local hotel that was a haven for prostitution.

And others said they have seen an increased police presence in the last few weeks.“The deputies are there right away,” said Maria Mendez, who has lived in Maywood for most of her 73 years.“Before you used to wait and wait for the police.”

One reason for the general enthusiasm might lie in the fact that many of the nonpolice workers have been rehired on contract, so in some cases the faces encountered by the public remain the same. In other words, no one has noticed much going wrong because there was not much to notice in the first place.

The five crossing guards, for instance, are doing the same work but are paid by a security company.

“Remember the Soviet Union?” said Hector Alvarado, who heads a civic advocacy group.“They had a lot of bureaucracy, and they lost. Maywood was like that. Now people know if they don’t work, they will be laid off. Much better this way.”
Samantha colisimo testa

Hamilton, Canada

#9 Mar 30, 2013
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/business/20 ...

By DAVID STREITFELD
While many communities are fearfully contemplating extensive cuts, Maywood says it is the first city in the nation in the current downturn to take an ax to everyone.
The school crossing guards were let go. Parking enforcement was contracted out, City Hall workers dismissed, street maintenance workers made redundant. The public safety duties of the Police Department were handed over to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
At first, people in this poor, long-troubled and heavily Hispanic city southeast of Los Angeles braced for anarchy.
Senior citizens were afraid they would be assaulted as they walked down the street. Parents worried the parks would be shut and their children would have nowhere to safely play. Landlords said their tenants had begun suggesting that without city-run services they would no longer feel obliged to pay rent.

The apocalypse never arrived. In fact, it seems this city was so bad at being a city that outsourcing — so far, at least — is being viewed as an act of municipal genius.

“We don’t want to be the model for other cities to lay off their employees,” said Magdalena Prado, a spokeswoman for the city who works on contract.“But our residents have been somewhat pleased.”

That includes Mayor Ana Rosa Rizo, who was gratified to see her husband get a parking ticket on July 1, hours after the Police Department had been disbanded. The ticket was issued by enforcement clerks for the neighboring city of Bell, which is being paid about $50,000 a month by Maywood to perform various services.

Maywood, which covers slightly more than one square mile, is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. The official population of 30,000 is believed to considerably understate the actual total of about 50,000.

It has some of the ills that plague other cities. Property taxes, a primary source of revenue, have declined to $900,000 from $1.2 million in 2007. Sales taxes have also dropped. But Maywood’s biggest problem by far has been its police department.

There are $19 million in claims pending against the police, which made it effectively impossible for the city to get insurance for any of its employees. If Maywood did not dismiss the municipal work force, officials said, bankruptcy would have been the only option. The total number of laid-off employees, including those in the Police Department, was about 60, city officials said.

The budget for the Police Department last year was nearly $8 million, more than half of Maywood’s revenues. The contract with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will cost about half of that. Insurance premiums for the city have fallen to $200,000 from $1 million.

The deputies have already engendered good will, Councilman Aguirre said, by cracking down on a local hotel that was a haven for prostitution.

And others said they have seen an increased police presence in the last few weeks.“The deputies are there right away,” said Maria Mendez, who has lived in Maywood for most of her 73 years.“Before you used to wait and wait for the police.”

One reason for the general enthusiasm might lie in the fact that many of the nonpolice workers have been rehired on contract, so in some cases the faces encountered by the public remain the same. In other words, no one has noticed much going wrong because there was not much to notice in the first place.

The five crossing guards, for instance, are doing the same work but are paid by a security company.

“Remember the Soviet Union?” said Hector Alvarado, who heads a civic advocacy group.“They had a lot of bureaucracy, and they lost. Maywood was like that. Now people know if they don’t work, they will be laid off. Much better this way.”
a Utica taxpaper

Utica, NY

#10 Mar 30, 2013
What is the matter Samantha, don't you have enough brains to state YOUR OWN "opinions" instead of merely quoting from other articles?

This is just one of many reasons why you will NEVER get re-elected to the Common Council ever again. YOU did nothing to protect the taxpapers that paid for your part-time job.
Utica34

Anonymous Proxy

#11 Mar 30, 2013
Samantha colisimo testa wrote:
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07 /20/business/20...
By DAVID STREITFELD
While many communities are fearfully contemplating extensive cuts, Maywood says it is the first city in the nation in the current downturn to take an ax to everyone.
The school crossing guards were let go. Parking enforcement was contracted out, City Hall workers dismissed, street maintenance workers made redundant. The public safety duties of the Police Department were handed over to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
At first, people in this poor, long-troubled and heavily Hispanic city southeast of Los Angeles braced for anarchy.
Senior citizens were afraid they would be assaulted as they walked down the street. Parents worried the parks would be shut and their children would have nowhere to safely play. Landlords said their tenants had begun suggesting that without city-run services they would no longer feel obliged to pay rent.
The apocalypse never arrived. In fact, it seems this city was so bad at being a city that outsourcing — so far, at least — is being viewed as an act of municipal genius.
“We don’t want to be the model for other cities to lay off their employees,” said Magdalena Prado, a spokeswoman for the city who works on contract.“But our residents have been somewhat pleased.”
That includes Mayor Ana Rosa Rizo, who was gratified to see her husband get a parking ticket on July 1, hours after the Police Department had been disbanded. The ticket was issued by enforcement clerks for the neighboring city of Bell, which is being paid about $50,000 a month by Maywood to perform various services.
Maywood, which covers slightly more than one square mile, is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. The official population of 30,000 is believed to considerably understate the actual total of about 50,000.
It has some of the ills that plague other cities. Property taxes, a primary source of revenue, have declined to $900,000 from $1.2 million in 2007. Sales taxes have also dropped. But Maywood’s biggest problem by far has been its police department.
There are $19 million in claims pending against the police, which made it effectively impossible for the city to get insurance for any of its employees. If Maywood did not dismiss the municipal work force, officials said, bankruptcy would have been the only option. The total number of laid-off employees, including those in the Police Department, was about 60, city officials said.
The budget for the Police Department last year was nearly $8 million, more than half of Maywood’s revenues. The contract with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will cost about half of that. Insurance premiums for the city have fallen to $200,000 from $1 million.
The deputies have already engendered good will, Councilman Aguirre said, by cracking down on a local hotel that was a haven for prostitution.
And others said they have seen an increased police presence in the last few weeks.“The deputies are there right away,” said Maria Mendez, who has lived in Maywood for most of her 73 years.“Before you used to wait and wait for the police.”
One reason for the general enthusiasm might lie in the fact that many of the nonpolice workers have been rehired on contract, so in some cases the faces encountered by the public remain the same. In other words, no one has noticed much going wrong because there was not much to notice in the first place.
The five crossing guards, for instance, are doing the same work but are paid by a security company.
“Remember the Soviet Union?” said Hector Alvarado, who heads a civic advocacy group.“They had a lot of bureaucracy, and they lost. Maywood was like that. Now people know if they don’t work, they will be laid off. Much better this way.”
Amen sister
Upd

Atlanta, GA

#12 Mar 30, 2013
You need us
Not

Feeding Hills, MA

#13 Mar 30, 2013
Upd wrote:
You need us
Utica needs police. Whethervthere city employees or county is inmaterial
Tubby labella

Anonymous Proxy

#14 Mar 31, 2013
Not wrote:
<quoted text>
Utica needs police. Whethervthere city employees or county is inmaterial
I would not have been chief if the sheriffs were in control. The taxpayers would have to elect me
Consolidate police forces

Camillus, NY

#15 Mar 31, 2013
Having seperate police services for towns, villages, and the county is not necessary. Consolidation of this service would save the County, City, and surrounding areas money. Overall their would be a reduciton in police force, cars, cost of insurances, and management required to separately operate each entity independantly. A study should be performed to investigate the cost benefits which could be achieved through a consolidated venture such as this.....
You get it

New Britain, CT

#16 Mar 31, 2013
Consolidate police forces wrote:
Having seperate police services for towns, villages, and the county is not necessary. Consolidation of this service would save the County, City, and surrounding areas money. Overall their would be a reduciton in police force, cars, cost of insurances, and management required to separately operate each entity independantly. A study should be performed to investigate the cost benefits which could be achieved through a consolidated venture such as this.....
Nice to see some people get it. Too bad its not the common council or mayor
Stanwix Prison

Schenectady, NY

#17 Mar 31, 2013
Consolidate police forces wrote:
Having seperate police services for towns, villages, and the county is not necessary. Consolidation of this service would save the County, City, and surrounding areas money. Overall their would be a reduciton in police force, cars, cost of insurances, and management required to separately operate each entity independantly. A study should be performed to investigate the cost benefits which could be achieved through a consolidated venture such as this.....
Spoken like someone in utica. The suburbs don't need or want any interaction with utica public services. Utica needs to fix their own problems.
You get it

Derby, CT

#18 Apr 1, 2013
Stanwix Prison wrote:
<quoted text>
Spoken like someone in utica. The suburbs don't need or want any interaction with utica public services. Utica needs to fix their own problems.
Spoken like a person who works for Utica but lives outside of Utica.......
Upd

Columbus, OH

#19 Apr 1, 2013
UTICA —
At least four city firefighters do not live in Oneida County — a fact that might violate state law and could prevent them from being city employees.
But the firefighters’ union believes a clause in the state law gives them an exemption.
The four firefighters, Lt. Michael Andrade, Firefighter Jeffery DeSarro, Lt. Francis Guarascio, and Lt. Mathew Zennamo, all live in Herkimer County.
It is common knowledge they don’t live in the county but the state law allows them to live in contiguous counties, said Rob Wenner, union president.
“We believe we’re protected in adjoining counties,” he said.
A 2007 opinion by the state Attorney General’s office, however, disagrees.
In an informal opinion, looking at the same issue in the city of Syracuse, Assistant Solicitor General Kathleen Sheingold wrote that paid city firefighters did have to live within Onondaga County.
Sheingold also wrote that the exemption for contiguous counties is only for cities with over 1 million residents and was originally intended only for New York City. Utica’s population is approximately 62,000.
Mayor Robert Palmieri said on Wednesday he was unaware of the situation.
“We will conduct a thorough investigation,” he said.
The city will look at the situation with legal counsel before deciding what the appropriate step is, he added.
Fire Chief Russell Brooks said he did know that several firefighters lived outside the county and that he had informed the union they were violating state law.
Brooks said he did not know which firefighters specifically lived outside the county but pointed out residency requirement issues have plagued the city for some time.
“It hasn’t been enforced,” he said.“The city has done a dismal job of enforcing this over the years.”
Firefighters are exempt from the city’s residency laws.
If the department is exempt from city residency rules, it should follow state law, said Public Safety Committee Chairman Frank Meola, D-at-large.
“The union was adamant about the city’s residency requirement,” he said.“I’d hope they’d be as adamant about enforcing the state law within their union.”
NEWS PAPER GIRL

Syracuse, NY

#20 Apr 1, 2013
Upd wrote:
UTICA —
At least four city firefighters do not live in Oneida County — a fact that might violate state law and could prevent them from being city employees.
But the firefighters’ union believes a clause in the state law gives them an exemption.
The four firefighters, Lt. Michael Andrade, Firefighter Jeffery DeSarro, Lt. Francis Guarascio, and Lt. Mathew Zennamo, all live in Herkimer County.
It is common knowledge they don’t live in the county but the state law allows them to live in contiguous counties, said Rob Wenner, union president.
“We believe we’re protected in adjoining counties,” he said.
A 2007 opinion by the state Attorney General’s office, however, disagrees.
In an informal opinion, looking at the same issue in the city of Syracuse, Assistant Solicitor General Kathleen Sheingold wrote that paid city firefighters did have to live within Onondaga County.
Sheingold also wrote that the exemption for contiguous counties is only for cities with over 1 million residents and was originally intended only for New York City. Utica’s population is approximately 62,000.
Mayor Robert Palmieri said on Wednesday he was unaware of the situation.
“We will conduct a thorough investigation,” he said.
The city will look at the situation with legal counsel before deciding what the appropriate step is, he added.
Fire Chief Russell Brooks said he did know that several firefighters lived outside the county and that he had informed the union they were violating state law.
Brooks said he did not know which firefighters specifically lived outside the county but pointed out residency requirement issues have plagued the city for some time.
“It hasn’t been enforced,” he said.“The city has done a dismal job of enforcing this over the years.”
Firefighters are exempt from the city’s residency laws.
If the department is exempt from city residency rules, it should follow state law, said Public Safety Committee Chairman Frank Meola, D-at-large.
“The union was adamant about the city’s residency requirement,” he said.“I’d hope they’d be as adamant about enforcing the state law within their union.”
YEAH! WE KNOW, WE ALL READ THE PAPER. WHO CARES?!

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