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In a stunning article in the New York Post, “Sanitation Department’s slow snow cleanup was a budget protest,” Sally Goldenberg, Larry Celona and Josh Margolin report that “a group of guilt-ridden sanitation workers” have now confessed that government union leaders in New York City “ordered their drivers to snarl the blizzard cleanup to protest budget cuts—a disastrous move that turned streets into a minefield for emergency-services vehicles”.
Miles of roads stretching from as north as Whitestone, Queens, to the south shore of Staten Island still remained treacherously unplowed last night because of the shameless job action, several sources and a city lawmaker said, which was over a raft of demotions, attrition and budget cuts.
“They sent a message to the rest of the city that these particular labor issues are more important,” said City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Queens), who was visited yesterday by a group of guilt-ridden sanitation workers who confessed the shameless plot.
Halloran said he met with three plow workers from the Sanitation Department—and two Department of Transportation supervisors who were on loan—at his office after he was flooded with irate calls from constituents.
The snitches “didn’t want to be identified because they were afraid of retaliation,” Halloran said. “They were told [by supervisors] to take off routes [and] not do the plowing of some of the major arteries in a timely manner. They were told to make the mayor pay for the layoffs, the reductions in rank for the supervisors, shrinking the rolls of the rank-and-file.”
New York’s Strongest used a variety of tactics to drag out the plowing process—and pad overtime checks—which included keeping plows slightly higher than the roadways and skipping over streets along their routes, the sources said.
The snow-removal snitches said they were told to keep their plows off most streets and to wait for orders before attacking the accumulating piles of snow.
They said crews normally would have been more aggressive in com bating a fierce, fast-moving blizzard like the one that barreled in on Sunday and blew out the next morning.