Wednesday, January 9, 2019



Improved financial health means better oversight for Poughkeepsie city government

POUGHKEEPSIE – The fiscal crisis that hobbled government efficiency in Poughkeepsie is becoming a distant memory.

City Administrator Marc Nelson told the common council that with things coming together financially, they are reinventing city administration, one department at a time.

During years of fiscal crisis, departments were merged and some positions were lost or not filled.  For many years, one person has filled a dual role of budget analyst and personnel manager.  That is changing.

“We feel that the elevation of Human Resources to the stature of a full city department is appropriate at this time as the city continues to get a handle on its finances,” Nelson said.  “We continue to negotiate complex, increasingly complex contracts with all of our collective bargaining groups.”

Bringing Human Resources to the department level, answerable directly to the administration and mayor, will give better oversight on all levels of the city workforce, from union employees to management through a management performance review process. 

“So, in the past, management raises have been typically a function of what raises have been awarded to certain collective bargaining groups; it being the thought of old that while whatever the unions get, the management gets and there has not been a performance-based metric system for department heads.”

It doesn’t stop there.  Nelson said they can now focus on more specific concerns including diversity outreach.

Nelson called this a “cash positive” move for the city.


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