Mayor Nutter today said the state House of Representatives' decision to delay a vote on the city's budget relief bill represents an "untenable situation for us," and stressed that the city will be moving forward with the "Plan C" budget.
"This is exactly what we were fearing," Nutter said. "The one thing that is not unclear: we have a timetable, we must manage our resources."
The state House had been scheduled to vote on House Bill 1828 -- which would allow the city to raise the sales tax temporarily and to defer some pension payments -- next Tuesday. But that vote has been delayed due to widespread union complaints over pension amendments tacked on to the bill by the state Senate.
The earliest anything could happen is now Thursday -- and there's a good chance the state House will alter the bill, which would kick it back to the Senate, delaying the process further.
Without passage of HB 1828, Nutter says he will have to pass a Plan C budget, which calls for the layoff of 3,000 city workers, including police and firefighters. On Thursday, the city had planned to send notices to vendors and community groups, notifiying them of cuts. Nutter said that will still happen if the city sees no action in the House. "We don't have any choice," he said.
And layoff notices will go out to employees on Sept. 18, if legislators have not approved the bill, Nutter said. He stressed that the city does not have time to spare. "Time is not our friend," he said.