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Unions: City Hall Top-Heavy With Managers

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Chicago City Hall (Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — There are too many bosses and not enough rank-and-file workers, a report by unions representing city employees will say Tuesday.

The report comes as Mayor Emanuel has threatened to lay off 625 workers to save $10 million this year.

On one of the mayor’s cost-saving suggestions, CBS 2 has learned, there’s already been an agreement between City Hall and Cement Masons Local 502. Members will be giving up the double-time pay rate they’d been getting in some situations for the time-and-a-half most others are paid in similar circumstances.

The cement masons  work on jobs such as building handicapped ramps and new curbs and sidewalks.

It’s a small union, just 67 workers. But the move is highly symbolic as the first voluntary giveback by any of the unions. If the same terms are accepted by the other unions, it could save the city millions.

Other union workers are also getting involved. They’ve suggested what are being called operational efficiencies, or cheaper ways of doing the same work.

Other issues the unions will address Tuesday are costly outside contracts for work they claim could be done cheaper in house and -– the big one — a work force they say is top-heavy with managers.

One department, Family and Support Services, has a small group of workers but one commissioner, 14 deputy commissioners, four assistant commissioners and six assistants to the commissioners. A spokesman for Mayor Emanuel says they are working to reduce the number of managers.

The city’s Department of Information Technology has 11 deputy chief information officers, a chief and a deputy chief overseeing 103 workers.

City officials say their consultant agrees the IT department doesn’t need so many managers. 

And at the aviation department? The unions found 41 managers making $100,000 each. City hall didn’t have a response to that.

Contributing: CBS 2 Political Producer Ed Marshall

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