Final decision on Merced layoffs on hold

MERCED, Calif.

Monday night the city manager rescinded 17 of those pink slips - all of them public safety positions.

John Bramble laid out a plan that would use $1.5 million from the reserve fund to help save these jobs. Another $500,000 is expected to come from vehicle licensing fees.

More than 150 people packed city hall for Monday's city council meeting. Dozens had to watch on a closed circuit feed from another room because the council chamber was full.

Merced city council members heard from dozens of people who asked them to take their jobs off the chopping block.

Out of the newly proposed plan - a total of 19 sworn police officers and seven firefighters will still be let go.

We spoke with one officer who got her pink slip rescinded by the city and describes what it was like the weeks before when her job was on the line.

"I was elated. The stress that was placed on me is just immense. I wouldn't wish it on anybody it's too much to bear." said Merced police officer Raquel Rios.

"We're not at critical mass. We're in a situation that's manageable and we're going to have to manage our way out of it." said Merced Mayor Bill Spriggs.

The council voted 6-1 to wait and hold on until making a final decision on the layoffs.

The city council will have until June 20th to approve a final budget so the numbers of people who are laid off can change. And those who are still let go after that, their last day will be June 26th.

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