The Grays Harbor County Commissioners have ordered the county department heads to make yet another adjustment to their 2011 budgets.
“We ask the department to make adjustment to their budget of three-percent less than what they have at this time,” says Commission Chair Terry Willis, who also ordered the department heads to amend their 2012 spending plans to reflect the new spending levels as they are put together.
The county now finds itself over $780-thousand short on their 2011 budget, thanks to lower than expected revenue and increased expenses and must have the new spending level in place by September 1st. County Assessor Rick Hole says such a cut will impact service and urged the commissioners to look at county spending in the long-term, rather than relying on cuts made throughout the year…
“What are the core service we need to provide, what are people willing to pay for, what are we mandated by law to do,” says Hole, whose thoughts were echoed by Auditor Vern Spatz who says voluntary furloughs and repeated mid-budget cuts are not the answer.
“I think the only thing that will work are mandatory furloughs or we need to look at department levels and trim positions,” says Spatz.
The county will meet with the employees unions on August 4th to discuss voluntary furlough days which would trim some spending, but Spatz says are not the long-term solution according to Auditor Vern Spatz. Whatever the final decision, the department heads have been asked to have their cuts into the Commissioners by August 12th.