NEW YORK (CBS 2) — Union workers expressed their opposition to potentially devastating budget cuts by camping out overnight in the shadow of City Hall, Jay Dow reports.

They’re trying to save thousands of jobs. District 37 Union members and their supporters called the encampment “Bloombergville.”

“We need more money, we need contracts, we need everything,” said union member Sylvia Williams.

“They might as well put us on welfare with everybody else, because we can’t afford to live off what they pay us now,” said Josie Bennett, president of Local 1505.

District 37 is New York City’s largest public employees union. Members said City Hall’s proposed budget, which calls for laying off 4,100 city workers, cuts too deeply. They cite a union research report that claims the city could soften the blow by tapping more than $800 million in newly-identified potential revenue sources, including uncollected taxes.

Mayor Bloomberg, however, wasn’t as optimistic. “This city does not have the kind of revenues that we had back when we were putting money away,” he said.

In fact, the mayor says next year’s financial outlook isn’t any better.

“We have to start looking right now for ways to start doing more with less in city government, and we’re going to continue to do that. Getting another budget is just another step.”

With whom do you side in this budget battle? Sound off in our comments section below…

Comments (19)
  1. Stephanie says:

    Keep up the good work! New Yorkers have a right to education, health care, and the other vital services on the chopping block.

    I visited Bloombergville last night and encourage others to do the same. Stand up for the working people of NYC!

  2. Concern says:


  3. lydia says:

    Bloomberg is blowing smoke…there is PLENTY of money in the city, including the billions in his pockets and those of his friends and clients (who lease the terminals his company sells) on Wall Street,
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  4. Timeto Growup says:

    We have to get our society off the dependence of government or we are going to end up like Greece. The whiney comments on this blog are a disgrace. What other generation expected the government to support them? We would all be speaking German. Being able to make it on your own is what America is all about, if you want to live in a society where you NEED a government to support you, please pack up your things and get on the next ship out of here you socialist losers.

  5. John McGloin says:

    There are 56 bbillionaires in NY state alone. They make ten thousand times what a union worker makes, moving around money that belongs to others, and taking a slice everytime They do not work ten thousand times harder then a nyc school teacher that spends all day dealing with 150 teenagers, then all night writing lessons and marking homework.
    CEOs vote themselves huge salaries and bonuses even when their companies are bankrupt, but you don’t call them leeches.
    If you spend your time on the internet protecting the wealth of billionaires (who have armeis of lawyers and lobbiests to do that for them) you are either a billionaire, payed by a billionaire, or a complete sucker.
    30 years of tax cuts for the wealthy have left us with the worst recession since 1940.

    1. Dennis McNulty says:

      waaaa, waaaa, waaa, the government owes me a living waaa, waa, waa, you rich people were put on this earth to take care of me and my sorry brood. waaaa, waaa, waaaa

      1. John McGloin says:

        Your imitation of CEOs and their lobbiests brings tears to my eyes but it still seems obvious to me that you can’t get that rich unless your willing to take the work that someone else does and turn it into your own mega fortune. Governments have always redistributed wealth. For ten thousand years it was from the poor to the rich. We had a few decades where soome of that stolen sweat was returned, and during that time the world was more prosperous than ever. Ever since we entered the era of greed, the economy has gotten worse and worse.

  6. david says:

    With all these cuts to governments workers and talk of making government smaller, Why do we need government if they are not doing anything. I will not pay my taxes to government just so they can tell me what I can or cannot do from washington. Maybe some workers are overpaid but they would be making less than 7.25 an hour if Bloomberg or the republicans had their way. Stupid American Capitalists. Bring back Reagan Socialism!!!

  7. Goblin says:

    I’m glad Bloomberg is taking a stand against these union leeches.

    1. John McGloin says:

      One Sunday I’m sitting on my couch marking tests, And I see Bloomberg on the golf course saying ‘we need to squeeze more productivity from the teachers.’ Forntunately the remote did not break the TV.
      The billionaires are the leeches. If they had any idea what to do with all of that money the economy wouldn’t be ina quagmire.

  8. joe says:

    They need money they are not making enough we the people pay everything for them they do not contribute any money to their health or pension what the hell are they crying about. City workers make pleanty of cash.

  9. Idratherbegolfing says:

    50% of the people in the union are lazy under skilled workers being protected by their union. Just look at Local 3 (IBEW). Some in this union are very talented at what they do but the majority are lazy under skilled workers. If they did not have the union they would be fired from their job within weeks. They all want more but when push comes to shove they won’t give anything back. The city, state, and local municipalities are all broke yet none of these workers is willing to give back or make real concessions.

    1. Ian says:

      You seem to be making a mistake Local 3 is a private union, the workers do not have year round employment unless the contractor they are working for has work for them. Its different than a public union where they know they always have a job until now and the ax is coming hard. So please do not compare the two.

  10. Zach says:

    These workers Deserve our respect and support. We don’t need more calls for us to do more for you with less to show for it. Kudos to the members of DC37 for fighting back against Bloomberg’s attacks against the people who make our city great.

  11. Rick says:

    I don’t care how much $ the DC37 city supposedly has giving any more to city workers should not happen. They are all overpaid for the job they do. You want to live like this more to Greece!

    1. Kris says:

      So glad I quit working for the city and moved away, with people like Rick thinking city workers are overpaid. It’s clear from your comments you really don’t know any facts at all. How about you tell us how giving tax breaks to the rich will create jobs; I could use a laugh.

  12. Gary says:

    Bloomberg is blowing smoke…there is PLENTY of money in the city, including the billions in his pockets and those of his friends and clients (who lease the terminals his company sells) on Wall Street, much of it taxpayer money from the bailouts. Raising taxes on the wealthy would bring in more than enough revenue to stop layoffs of teachers and cuts to key services like health care, education, and fire stations. We don’t need to make ANY cuts to jobs, benefits, or services. Wall Street didn’t tighten their belts after the bailouts (actually, they don’t even have belts, they wear suspenders), so it’s especially OUTRAGEOUS that they expect hardworking people to. Don’t throw grandma or our children under the bus…tax the rich!

    1. Idratherbegolfing says:

      Yeah. Tax the rich more and give that money to me.

    2. Dale Auburn says:

      If you want to raise taxes on the rich, you’d also have to pass a law to prevent them from moving away.

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