“I applaud the City Council for finding the means to develop a budget that, in spite of a down economy, will save crucial City services. There are victories in this budget, including the preservation of service at Ladder 53 on City Island, as well as firehouses all over the five boroughs, the almost full restoration of our community board budgets and the continuation of six-day service at our public libraries.

“While no one is happy about a 0.5 percent increase in our City’s sales tax, the move was necessary to preserve the quality of life of everyday New Yorkers. Still, as up to 2,000 City workers, including many employees of the Department of Education, face layoffs, I must criticize this administration for failing to pass a tax increase on those making more than $500,000 a year. Such a move would have filled the current gap, prevented these layoffs, and spread this new tax burden evenly across all New Yorkers, rather than squarely on the shoulders of the middle and working class.”