By Eden Laikin
County Executive Edward P. Mangano responded to comments made today by Nassau’s public employee unions, by telling union leaders to “get off their butts” and negotiate with him and help save hundreds of residents’ jobs.
In his harshest rebuke to date, Mangano said he would not “give in to threats” by union leaders, whose actions he called “insulting to veterans of World War II, Vietnam, Korea, Iraq and Afghanistan who are struggling to pay their property taxes and live in Nassau County.”
“Rather than waste members’ dues on tee-shirts and juvenile signs, union leaders would serve their members responsibly by getting their butts to the negotiation table,” Mangano said in a prepared statement, after a two-hour protest by union leaders and members in front of the County Executive and Legislative building in Mineola. “The fact remains if union bosses fail to negotiate more of their members will lose their jobs or will be furloughed.”
As to members of the police unions who joined the demonstration, Mangano said “residents do not sympathize with members’ who earn six-figure salaries, work 3 days a week and receive 61 paid days off a year. While we value police officers bravery and dedication, taxpayers cannot afford a 39% property tax hike to provide free health insurance and educational pay when no educational enhancement is required.”
County Executive Mangano has said that without union concessions, an additional 1,000 workers would have to be laid off.
Mangano maintains he is still willing to meet with union leaders and negotiate a fair and equitable agreement.