Mayor Nagin Predicts Worker Furloughs

New Orleans, La. – Mayor Nagin says that while no layoffs are anticipated, city workers will take a financial hit. He said one proposal calls for 12 furlough days, which will be scheduled around existing holidays. Meantime, city workers will also pay higher health care premiums and deductibles. The city plans to extend the hiring freeze enacted this year, and all departments - including contractors -- will get a 10 percent funding cut. The mayor said the city will also be more aggressive in collecting fees for permits. He blames some of the deficit on a downturn in the national economy, and lower-than-expected tax collections. The administration's proposals will be presented to the City Council on Friday.