Poughkeepsie seeks to avoid layoffs

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POUGHKEEPSIE – The City of Poughkeepsie is facing a COVID-19 pandemic budget shortfall and has made cutbacks in most departments to overcome that shortfall, and layoffs have been considered.

Several employees have been concerned that the proverbial “axe” will fall soon but City Administrator Marc Nelson is cautiously optimistic that layoffs can be averted.

“Although a number of options have been on the table pending a resolution to the broader issue of direct federal stimulus to municipalities, there are no plans for immediate layoffs,” said Nelson.

At the end of March, Congress passed a stimulus package that included $5 billion for big cities.  Poughkeepsie, along with hundreds of cities across the nation did not receive any of the money because they don’t have populations of 500,000 or more.  The National Association of Counties and the National League of Cities are lobbying for changes in the next funding package that would include cities such as Poughkeepsie, Newburgh, and Kingston.

“Our hope is that the US Congress recognizes that the most effective stimulus at this point in the pandemic flows right down Main Street through our states and local governments,” said Nelson.