Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Bloomberg To Cut Custodial Budget In Schools By $10 Million

Expect dirtier schools:

Already a friendly haven for dried chewing gum and food wrappers, the city’s public schools may soon become even grimier.

The city’s Department of Education is cutting over $10 million from its custodial budget, according to a notice sent Tuesday to public school principals. The memo states that the spending cut “is expected to have a direct impact on the custodial services performed in each building.”

Translation? “The schools are going to get dirtier,” said Robert Troeller, president of Local 891 of the International Union of Operating Engineers, which represents school custodial engineers, who are responsible for hiring and supervising the cleaners and handymen at each school.

“My members have done a remarkably good job of absorbing the cuts and keeping the buildings running and keeping them fairly clean, but they’ve gotten to the point where that’s no longer possible,” Mr. Troeller said.

Schools will have their custodial budgets cut based on their square footage, according to Marge Feinberg, a spokeswoman for the Department of Education. All buildings will be affected, she said, but the city’s largest schools will bear the brunt of the cuts, losing an average of $32,000 per school.

Custodial engineers at each school will decide how to absorb the budget cuts.

Mr. Troeller said that $10 million equated to about 266 full-time cleaners, but that the loss in funds would affect each school differently. While smaller schools could see full-time cleaners become part-time cleaners, custodians and handymen at large schools may lose their jobs entirely.

The cuts are the latest in a series of cutbacks school custodians have faced in recent years. In 2010, the city trimmed schools’ custodial budgets by $6 million and in 2009 by $5.5 million, Mr. Troeller said.

It seems every budget gets cut but the tech budget of $550 million for next year.

That technology expenditure is sacrosanct for Bloomberg.

You what needs some cutting?

Bloomberg's ego, that's what.