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Dallas City Hall Hands Out Pink Slips


By BJ Austin, KERA News

Dallas, TX –

The "pink slips" are circulating at Dallas City Hall. 840 workers are being notified they are losing their jobs. KERA's BJ Austin says Friday is the day the city is to deliver the bad news, but a couple of departments, with long lists, got a head start yesterday. KERA's BJ Austin reports.

In a letter in the layoff packets, City Manager Mary Shum calls the cutbacks are painful but necessary to fill a 190 million dollar budget shortfall.

Patricia Marsolais, director of Civil Service, says the laid-off employees get first dibs on nearly 600 vacant jobs being funded through federal stimulus money or grants.

Morsolais: I would encourage people to stay positive, because there are those opportunities that are gonna be out there for them, where there is funding.

But Mel Fugate, with SMU's Cox School of Business, says a positive, productive attitude among many in the city hall workforce is going to be hard to maintain for the six weeks - til the last day of work September 30th.

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Fugate: I mean, are you going to get full performance? Are you going to get full effort? You're not. It would be unrealistic to expect that. It's a matter of what will you get and what do you need between now and D-day, so to speak, and how best to get it.

The city is providing counseling, transition sessions, and help with applying for "different" jobs with the city. The final budget vote is not until September 23rd, but the number of layoffs is not expected to change.

Email BJ Austin