Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 10:19 AM
The mayor of East Cleveland says he is shedding employees as his city works through fiscal emergency. ideastream's Nick Castele reports.
Hear Norton's full comments above.
Mayor Gary Norton said yesterday the city had eliminated 12 positions in the past few weeks -- including laying off two police officers.
"Our goal is to reduce staff to ultimately lower our biweekly payroll," Norton said. "We must do that in order to achieve our financial goals. As we all know, payroll is our single biggest expense, and we must reduce it in order to reduce anything overall."
Norton made the comments at a meeting with state supervisors overseeing the city's finances. He also said he's expecting retirements in the police and fire departments, and won't fill all of those spots as people leave.
Norton also said he's looking to the Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland to take over programming at the Martin Luther King Jr. civic center -- which a spoksewoman for the organization confirmed in a phone message to ideastream.
Late last month, Ohio Auditor Dave Yost urged Norton to cut back on spending for the year.In a letter sent to the chair of the state commission overseeing East Cleveland's finances, Yost said the city is spending more than it is expected to take in this year in revenue.