(Eating Crow Over) The Firing of a Buffalo City Employee

What’s so special about Mayor Brown’s firing of city engineer Daniel Kreuz? Nothing really; Kreuz got caught with his hand in the cookie jar and the mayor laid down the law. Good for the mayor. Hopefully other city employees are sweating a little.

What’s so wrong about city government, however, has certainly not got anything to do with his age buried in paragraph nine of today’s Buffalo News article: “Kruez was one year away from qualifying for the highest tier of pension benefits.”

Kruez is 29 years ago employed with the city and he’s 51 years old.

Assuming (perhaps wrongly) that it takes at least a two-year college degree to become an $81,000 city engineer, this means that at most, Kruez has been professionally employed for all of eight years, yet was almost qualified for a full pension.

How could any city contract negotiating team possibly allow this type of employee contract? I don’t want to point the finger at any of our former mayors, but I believe that this had to have been negotiated under one of their watches.

I highly doubt that such a perk, now considered an entitlement by all city employees, will ever be taken away in subsequent contract negotiations. City taxpayers and the State, however, could potentially pay that bill for 45 or 50 years after an employee leaves the city’s employ.

I guess I have nothing critical to say today about the City of Buffalo and their labor contracts.  I stand corrected.  Thank you Becky for your comment.

2 Responses to (Eating Crow Over) The Firing of a Buffalo City Employee

  1. Becky says:

    Reading comprehension is a must. So is editing…

    When you wrote “Kruez is 29 years ago” I assume you meant that you thought he is 29 years old (according to a birthday search, he is 51).

    What it actually says is that he is a 29 year employee- he has worked for the city for 29 years.

    The pension benefits are set by NYS Retirement system, not Buffalo, although I thought the max-out number was 37 1/2 years.

    Suggestion – more coffee!

  2. Paul says:

    Ouch. Double ouch.

    (My blog has been corrected. It’s not very pertinent anymore).

    The irony is that I read that article twice, and also a separate article from about a week ago, and failed all three times to get the age vs. career length correct.

    You are correct about my needing more coffee.

    Thank you for the gentle correction.


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