CANTON — Mayor William Truly threatened to veto a vote by alderman Tuesday to pay the city’s bills after he says employees’ paychecks were being held hostage to pay former City Engineer Rudy Warnock nearly $110,000 in past-due claims.

The Board of Aldermen voted 4-3 to approve the claims docket with Aldermen Fred Esco, Les Penn, Eric Gilkie and Andrew Grant in favor of the motion. Aldermen Rodriguez Brown, Daphne Johnson Sims and Vicki McNeill voted against.

Truly says nearly $110,000 of past-due bills were included on the claims docket and not separated as they have been in previous meetings. Warnock was fired as Canton City Engineer on May 4 and has since been trying to get past-due bills paid despite the fact the city had limited his billings to $10,000 a month earlier in the year.

“This board has found it necessary to bundle Mr. Rudy Warnock’s pay with that of the employees and that of the vendors, which means if Mr. Warnock doesn’t get paid the employees don’t get paid and the vendors don’t get paid,” Truly said. “I’m against holding employees as hostages. And so here we go again.”

Truly said he would consider vetoing the action because the city didn’t have the money and was currently operating at a $1.8 million deficit.

“We just simply don’t have the money to do this,” he said. “The board has made its decision, so I will make my decision and either my veto will stand or it will be overturned.”

The board also voted 4-3 with the same lines drawn to hire Warnock & Associates to be the city engineer, another decision that could end up with a mayoral veto.