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After I posted this item on a city of San Diego hiring freeze imposed yesterday, a reader responded with a good question: How does this hiring freeze differ from the one instituted almost three years ago?

I e-mailed mayoral spokeswoman Rachel Laing. Here’s her response.

The hiring freeze announced in the memo yesterday is more stringent than the one that has been in place for the past few years.

Prior to yesterday, if you needed to hire someone, you needed to make your case and get [city COO Jay Goldstone’s] approval — which was not easy to come by.

Now, there is no “manual override” on General Fund positions, and the review on non-General Fund department hiring will be more strict. It also rescinds approval of General Fund-supported  positions previously approved if the offer has not been made an accepted in writing by today. There’s now a requirement to fill vacancies with existing city employees or keep it vacant.

All of this is geared toward reducing the number of potential layoffs for the next fiscal year.

— LIAM DILLON

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