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Published: Friday, 10/9/2009

Northwood eyeing layoffs, other cutbacks

Northwood is considering laying off five people, including two police patrolmen, and cutting back hours for another city employee as part of an effort to decrease its 2010 budget by $653,000.

Six other city jobs would be left vacant under cost-cutting proposals discussed last night by Northwood City Council's finance committee.

Council is scheduled to have a first reading of the proposed budget Oct. 22, and members are expected to vote on it in late November.

Reduced income tax collections have hit Northwood hard, in part because auto parts plants in the city were shut down several months this summer. Through September, income tax collections are $484,020 lower than last year, or down nearly 15 percent.

If two of 21 police patrolmen are laid off, then one of three detectives would go back on road patrol. And Northwood's community relations officer would be reassigned to mostly road patrol, too, said Thomas Cairl, Northwood's police chief.

Other proposed layoffs target the police department's traffic camera operator, a court employee, and a secretary. Hours for Northwood's part-time animal control officer would be reduced under the cost-cutting plan.

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