Budget Issues Could Lead To County Job Cuts

March 18, 2014
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Franklin County Council members are considering options to make budget reductions.

Franklin County Council members are considering options to make budget reductions.

Financial woes are forcing officials in Franklin County to consider cutting jobs.

The Indiana Department of Local Government Finance retracted a decision last month to allow the county to use $1.5 million in investment funds to cover the budget. County council members have since reviewed various options to make the budget reductions.

Franklin County Council discussed different methods to make the cuts during the Mar. 11 meeting.

The Franklin County Observer reported that County councilmen Daryl Kramer called for a reduction of 11 full-time jobs and 4 part-time positions. The proposal included layoffs impacting several departments including the Area Planning Commission, the Sheriff’s Department and Extension Office.

The proposal brought a strong reaction from the crowded audience. Commissioner Tom Linkel, Sheriff Ken Murphy, Assessor Sharon Halcomb, and Angie Riffle from Extension each voiced concern over the prospect of losing a department employee.

County councilwoman Becky Ogelsby made a motion to put the proposed job cuts on hold, however, the motion was voted against. During the meeting, she also suggested exhausting the county’s rainy day fund of $750,000 and the county contingency fund to cover some of the budget deficit to allow for a tax raise in 2015.

Councilmen Daryl Kramer and Aaron Leffingwell said the job cuts were necessary to avoid the county from facing receivership or bankruptcy, the online newsletter reported.

County council reduced some positions from the list of potential layoffs. Full-time positions at the treasurer’s office, the commissioner’s office and the clerk’s office were spared.

The proposed employee reductions could be made at the next council meeting on April 1.

 

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