A budget shortfall has forced the city’s hand, as pink slips were handed out to some city employees and other vacant positions were cut.

The city has made 70 job cuts, with 30 people getting laid off and 40 unfilled positions being cut.

“The City of Calgary, like other governments and other businesses, are facing declining revenues in some areas and that means there will be some tough decisions,” said Mayor Dave Bronconnier.

According to Bronconnier, the city will be able to balance its books and come in on budget for 2009, but 2010 is a different story.

“2010 is going to be a more challenging year, so as we look to 2010 it is now incumbent upon us as an administrative group to start looking at the revisions that will be required in order to balance the books,” he said.

To do this, Bronconnier suggested that the city has to proactively make changes to the current budget as a starting point.

According to Bronconnier, a $20-million shortfall is forecast for 2010.

“We will not be running a deficit. We will balance the books and we will move forward, making some tough choices in which to get there for 2010,” said Bronconnier.

Bronconnier said that in order to achieve a deficit-free 2010, the city would have to look for savings in a variety of areas.

With the $20-million projected shortfall still looming despite the cuts that were announced yesterday, more positions could face the chopping block.

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