Tuesday, February 7th, 2023
Tuesday, February 7th, 2023

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Sportsmen Since 1967

DEC eyes more layoffs

Albany – Gov._David Paterson’s call for 8,700 layoffs of state
workers has DEC officials scrambling to cut an additional 224
positions by July 1.

How many jobs will be lost in DEC’s Division of Fish, Wildlife
and Marine Resources wasn’t known at press time; the job cuts were
being handled on an agency-wide basis and the division hadn’t yet
been given a target number for reductions.

But Doug Stang, assistant director of DEC’s Division of Fish,
Wildlife and Marine Resources, says the cuts this time around could
be painful to sportsmen and women in the state.

“There is not any way we can further reduce staff without
affecting program delivery,”_Stang said. “Some, as yet undefined,
programs will have to be curtailed or reduced.”

Stang said that in addition to the latest round of layoffs
mandated by the governor’s office, DEC remains under a mandate to
trim 242 staff positions by March 31, 2010. That directive came as
part of the governor’s 2009-10 budget.

“This workforce reduction (via layoffs) is in addition to the
242 DEC staff reduction,” Stang said.

He said DEC’s Division of Fish, Wildlife and Marine Resources is
awaiting word on “how we may contribute to the workforce reduction
plan,” which was to be submitted late last month.

It’s unlikely any division within DEC will be spared from the
layoffs, and the Division of Fish, Wildlife and Marine Resources is
already eyeing potential cuts.

“We are currently surveying our programs to see where, if any,
of the division’s staff effort is spent on programs that may not
contribute to the fullest degree to the DEC’s mandated
mission,”_Stang said. “Currently, the Division of Fish, Wildlife
and Marine Resources has 421 permanent staff. I do not know what
that number will be a year from now, or come July 1 – only that it
will be less.”

Previous staff reductions have been made through attrition, but
it appears virtually impossible that DEC can reduce staff by
another 224 without individual job losses other than retirements or
voluntary departures.

A “Workforce Reduction Plan” submitted by Director of the Budget
Laura L. Anglin last month indicated the reductions would come
through attrition, layoffs and the continuation of a statewide
hiring freeze.

“In developing the Workforce Reduction Plan, agencies should
ensure that reductions are made in ways that do not impair the
agency’s core mission, and are distributed fairly and shared
equitably across positions,”_Anglin’s memo said.

The memo added that “it is expected that Workforce Reduction
Plans will impact positions at all levels, including middle and
upper level management positions.”

Paterson reduced his layoff target by 200 to 8,700 because
“management/confidential” employees – managers and secretaries who
are not in unions – will not receive 3-percent pay raises union
employees will get under contractual agreements.

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