Mayor Says San Jose's Economic Picture Improves
San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed says the city can ease up slightly on the austerity measures it adopted during lean budget years.
Thursday night in his annual State of the City address, Reed acknowledged that the pay cuts he imposed two years ago on city workers and retirees have been painful.
Still, the mayor says the worst is over. "The elements of the plan we've already implemented are saving us over $100 million a year," Reed said. "As a result, this year we're able to balance the budget with no layoffs and begin to restore services. like opening four branch libraries that have been vacant and locked."
Reed also plans to beef up law enforcement by hiring 200 more officers over the next two years, using the savings from pension reforms that residents voted in last year.
But the mayor said the budget wouldn't allow reversing the 10% pay cut that cops and other city employees took two years ago. He left open the possibility of a tax hike on the 2014 ballot.