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City leaders in Nevada suburb and Nevada suburb are taking some heat after declaring North Las Vegas a disaster area.
The -- using a -- -- aimed at natural disasters to try to fix the budget emergency that they are experiencing -- but the union leaders.
Are crying foul on that -- here's what they sat.
They're claiming a financial disaster but -- using a natural disaster to try to break the contracts they don't support unions.
They support downsizing outsourcing privatize -- combining of services that is a typical right wing philosophy.
And so let's talk about that North Las Vegas has a 31 million dollar budget hole for the fiscal years 20122013.
The unemployment rate for May is at 14%.
Nearly 6% higher than the eight point two national rate.
Plus the foreclosure rate in the area is three times higher.
Then the national average one in every 175.
Homes is under water and for closure.
So North Las Vegas mayor Sherry -- joins me now good to have you here American morning TO.
Good morning thank you for having me.
How how bad are things in your area and what forced you to sort of make this decision how did you decide well maybe -- declare this -- -- and natural disaster.
Will be able to make some changes.
And you know we haven't declared a natural disaster were declaring a financial emergency spoke out there.
Are two different things but our city -- been hit terribly hard probably harder than any city in this nation we believe.
From this economic downturn.
We have the highest and one of the highest in unemployment rates in the nation highest foreclosure rates.
Sales tax revenue in the state of Nevada is down 30% property tax values are down -- property tax revenue down about 42%.
So it's hit us especially hard we've -- -- unions for concessions to.
To get through this these tough times we've balanced our budget we're living within our -- where paying all of our bills.
But we've asked for our employees through their unions to make concessions which they haven't been willing to do but what what concessions did you did you ask them to make.
And and what what am willing to -- We asked them to not take a cost of living -- to not take a uniform allowance.
We asked them to stay where they were salary wise so today they are making the same amount that they were making June 30 their salaries have not put down but they where I'm willing.
To forgo their cost of living raise and to forgo their uniform allowance.
So what's gonna happen you know I will some of them lose their jobs because of the measures that you're now able to take under this legal a fiscal emergency that you comply.
The reason we took this fiscal emergency -- to try to save jobs that the City Council by law.
Has the right to under an emergency to take care of the citizen's health safety and welfare and we also have the right.
Under this provision we believed to suspend portions of their contract.
So by suspending these portions of the contract we believe were able to us actually save their jobs instead of having to lay them off that that they don't want that they're they're not happy with that and I mean what do you think would make them happy they don't want -- have a concessions that you suggested before taking this measure.
So now after taking this measure.
You know and it sounds like things could be rougher for -- -- believe -- -- you know they've -- just to.
Take make our citizens pay higher taxes they've asked us to sell City Hall.
They've asked us to borrow money from our utility fence so that we could pay for their races which of course we're not willing to do.
So it's a matter of of asking them our citizens are pulling together were working hard.
Our community is moving forward.
We have a really positive attitude.
It's a matter of getting our unions to come on board to see the bigger picture.
To come together but I is that what it in fact it -- and in that community observed for interrupting that they're saying they that -- union busting basically and that your your very right wing in your -- -- -- about that level what's your reaction -- -- out call.
It it's interesting to balance a budget to live within your means to curtail.
Excessive spending and over time to be responsible.
And responsive to the citizens.
We call that -- government tonight we'll see where -- here in a situation that we've heard.
From other communities as well and your time is something about it -- about good to have you with us and it had last seen out all those.
Thank you so much.
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