New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s first budget will add more than 1,000 workers to the public payroll– a 35 percent increase– reversing a six-year trend of downsizing city government, Crain’s New York Business reports.
De Blasio’s spending is a direct reflection of his priorities– the ones he campaigned on and for which he was elected– and is made possible by tax revenues and a balanced budget bequeathed to him by former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, something no incoming mayor has ever received.
His first budget totaled $75 billion—$5 billion more than Mr. Bloomberg’s final spending plan—and added 1,062 employees, for a total of 302,726.
The biggest staffing increase went to the Department of Education with 377 employees added, mainly in special education. The two other biggest staffing boosts went to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (234) for pre-K and the Department of Correction (225) for mental-health and anti-violence services in city jails. The Department of Transportation gained 143 employees, owed to Vision Zero.
Also, despite being pressured by the City Council to significantly beef up the number of police officers on the street, the mayor found an alternative, by moving 200 officers from desk jobs to public-housing beats, a total addition of 270 officers.