Group offers to help try and save county jobs in Westchester

A plan by the Westchester County Association, the county's major business group, to help foster an agreement with the county's unions and hopefully save jobs was quickly rejected today.

In a news conference today inside the County Office Building, Association President Bill Mooney said his group would like to help mediate contracts between the county's unions and the county.

But Bob Buckley, head of the Superior Officers Union, immediately rejected the offer from the same podium just vacated by Mooney.

While the comments from both men were heated, they also said after that they like and respect each other, but disagree on their positions.

County Executive Rob Astorino (R-Westchester) said when he released his 2012 proposed budget earlier this month that the loss of 210 county jobs could be avoided if union workers were willing to pay some of their health insurance costs.

An agreement will have to be worked out soon because the budget for next year has to be in place by Dec. 27. Democrats on the County Board have vowed to restore some of the cuts Astorino proposed.

To watch extended coverage of the budget battle in Westchester, go to channel 612 on your iO digital cable box and select iO Extra.

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