Montcalm County alters planned staffing cuts

Montcalm County, deficit, budget cuts, Board of Commissioners
A meeting of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners at which the county's budget deficit and planned cuts were discussed. (Sept. 26, 2016)

STANTON, Mich. (WOOD) — Montcalm County has adjusted the staffing cuts it will make as part of a plan to get its budget back on track.

The county has operated in a deficit for 12 of the last 13 years and is now some $2 million in the hole. It hired a consultant group to suggest plans to restructure the finances. The group suggested cutting 22.5 full-time equivalent positions to save $1.76 million.

At a Monday meeting, some changes were made to the layoff plan. The new breakdown of staffing cuts looks like this:

  • Three in the in judicial branch to save $197,748
  • 5.5 in general government to save $466,634
  • 10.5 from public safety to save $771,491
  • Two from the Commission on Aging to save $100,000
  • 0.5 from the Friend of the Court to save $30,608

The county will also cut $14,990 from the legislative budget, but it appears that will not come from staffing.

Commissioners approved the budget, which now heads to the state.

“The state would not look timely on a plan that didn’t get you to solvency in less than five years. We’re going to fix that one now. So it’s a zero-year, or instantaneous-year plan to the zero point, and we’re going to build from there,” a consultant told commissioners.

The layoffs announced last week will be effective Oct. 1.

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