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After glitches, Paterson looks to hire payroll service company

After an embarrassing so-called glitch that led to municipal employees receiving two or three paycheck direct deposits, Paterson is looking to hire a payroll service company.

“It’s something we think will be helpful for a lot of technical reasons, for a lot of payroll and finance reports,” said business administrator Kathleen Long.

Long said hiring an outside firm will make things “smoother” in the personnel division.

Some council members worried hiring an outside company for payroll services will result in job cuts

“In other words, you are trying to privatize payroll?” asked councilman Luis Velez.

“No. We are not privatizing [in the sense] of downsizing staff. We’ll not be doing that,” replied Long.

Long said a lot of municipalities use private firms to handle payroll.

“Show me one third party contract that we have that renders phenomenal service to the community,” said councilman Michael Jackson. “Here we are taking jobs away from Paterson residents.”

Councilwoman Maritza Davila pointed out her employer, the Passaic County Community College, uses ADP for payroll. She said it did not lead to job cuts.

Council president Flavio Rivera said hiring an outside firm will likely improve operations within payroll.

“The workers there would still do the same duties they are performing right now. Only difference is they don’t have to cut the checks and do all those things the company would do,” said Rivera.

Rivera said at present the city uses software it bought years ago to process payroll.

“I think this is a good idea,” said councilman Al Abdelaziz.

The city will be seeking proposals from private firms after securing approval from the City Council next week.

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