Hancock County

Waveland cuts 15 full-time positions to trim city budget

Waveland will cut 15 full-time employee positions from the city budget, but officials said the raises voted on in December would not be rescinded.

The Board of Aldermen voted early Wednesday morning after a 3 1/2-hour executive session to lay off 11 employees and reduce four employees from full time to part time.

The news came in a press conference Wednesday morning with Mayor David Garcia and City Attorney Gary Yarborough.

The vote was 3-1 with Shane Lafontaine voting against the measure.

"It's not a good day for the City of Waveland," Yarborough said. "But there will be better days ahead."

The move was made because of shortfalls in a budget passed by the prior administration. The raises, which were set in December and are effective for the four-year term, were justified, Garcia said, adding that killing the raises would not have affected the cuts that took place.

Waveland will cut seven public works employees, which includes the four full time to part-time workers, a court clerk, a city hall clerk and six in the police department that did not include any patrolmen. However, Assistant Police Chief Mike Prendergast was one of those employees.

There are more than 100 city employees. The city expects to save $800,000 in salaries and benefits.

Read more about this story in Thursday's Sun Herald.