Sand Springs city employees taking 26 furlough days this fiscal year

Tuesday, July 15th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Its no secret Oklahoma's economy is in bad shape. Last fiscal year, Tulsa city employees had to take seven furlough days to help save the city money. As News on 6 reporter Patrina Adger explains, the city of Sand Springs has to do the same thing, but their bearing a much larger burden.

Sand Springs City Manager Loy Calhoun has worked for the city of Sand Springs for 18 years. And as the city's manager he's responsible for "Budget, finances, personnel and administrative duties for the council."

He says his days are always busy, even busier now that he has to take two days off a month in order to help trim the city's budget by 8% to 10%. As of July 1st, more than 220 city employees including police and fire will have to take 26 days off this fiscal year, to keep the city in black and to keep all jobs in tact. Calhoun says the city would have had to cut 15 jobs if jobs if employees didn't agree to the furloughs but no one wanted to see the layoffs happen.

“Some cities have reduced and cutback on salaries and we haven't done that. We've reduced days and that reduced dollars you take home." Calhoun says city hall will remain open five days a week except on holidays. Except for a few empty offices, he says customers coming in will hardly notice a difference.

Calhoun realizes it's hard on some employees to make ends meet, getting a month less pay than before, but he says everyone's handling it the best way they can. "It does effect people but our objective and hope is that it won't last long."

The city manager says employees will take one furlough day off every two-week, pay period. There's a schedule set up so workers won't all take their furlough days the same day.