Thousand Oaks Mayor Frank Schillo on Wednesday defended the City Council's decision to adopt a $60.8-million spending plan that includes layoffs, despite charges from an employees' union that the city has plenty of money.
"I don't think we have a choice right now," Schillo said about the 1991-92 budget.
The budget was approved on a 4-0 vote Tuesday night. Councilman Bob Lewis was absent from the meeting.
City officials say they had to lay off workers to avoid a budget shortfall for the current year.
A total of 35 jobs were eliminated in next year's budget, including 14 jobs filled by employees who were given layoff notices last week. Most of the employees were from the public works department and library services.
In July the city will begin reducing street-sweeping and tree-trimming services. Two city libraries will be closed on Fridays.
Despite her approval, Councilwoman Judy Lazar objected to a plan to cut back library hours. "I don't know that closing the library on Fridays is going to serve the public best," she said.
About 75 members of the Thousand Oaks City Employees Assn. protested the cuts at the council meeting by wearing black arm bands.