In a press conference Thursday afternoon, County Executive David Craig announced the county would be terminating the positions of at least 34 employees and further reducing existing services in order to meet the latest round of budget cuts.
The cuts are supposedly coming department by department, starting with several today and continuing with the balance tomorrow.
Check back with The Dagger for details as they become available.
Here is the official county release:
County Executive Announces Additional Budget Cuts for FY 2010
Furloughs and Layoffs to be Implemented
(Bel Air, MD) – – Harford County Executive David R. Craig has announced the final decisions with respect to budget cuts the Administration was required to make following adoption of the FY 2010 budget by the Harford County Council late last month. The additional budget cuts from the Harford County Council totaling more than $5 million become effective July 1.
“Earlier today, I announced further reduction to our FY 2010 budget as the result of the additional cuts made by the Harford County Council,” Craig stated. “While these cuts will be difficult for many, they will not steer us drastically off the course we have set to improve Harford County. I am committed to keeping this county moving forward,” Craig remarked.
The budget County Executive Craig submitted to the Harford County Council in April contained nearly $38 million in cuts to the Operating Budget, an average of a 6% reduction to each of the county’s departments from the FY 2009 Operating Budget. “In developing the FY 10 budget my direction was clear, we were going to have the leanest budget possible without affecting direct services to our citizens and without having to layoff employees,” Craig remarked.
The County Council, made a decision to enact an additional reduction to the proposed Operating Budget of 5% across the board to departments of county government. Only the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, Harford County Public Schools, Harford Community College and the Harford County fire and EMS service were spared the additional 5% cut.
“The action by the County Council to cut an additional 5% from departments’ operating budgets, making the total cuts over 12%, has taken us to the tipping point where there is no choice but to impose reductions to citizen services and programs,” County Executive Craig stated.
Among the reductions to the FY 2010 Operating Budget to be implemented
July 1 include, but are not limited to the following:
– Five furlough days to all county employees
– Layoffs to some county employees
– Reduction in funding for materials for the public library
– Reduction in staff hours for those employed by Harford County Public Library
– The Harford County HazMat Team will no longer respond to blood spills for mitigation purposes
– Response times to HazMat calls for service will increase
– Elimination of public outreach programs to help individuals prepare for emergencies
– Elimination of the Gypsy Moth spraying program to help curb the spread of Gypsy Moths through farmland, forests and communities
– Closing of the Tollgate Road yard waste drop-off site
– Closing of waste oil drop-off sites
– Reduced funding for the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for the Harford County Circuit Court
-Elimination of Juvenile Counseling Services
– No trail monitors for the Ma & Pa Trail during peak hours and on weekends
– Reduction in county funding to Agriculture extension services
– Reduction in county funding for soil conservation
– Reduction in county funding to support the Economic Development Fund
– Reduction in county funding to support workforce training grants
– Reduction in county funding to support the Susquehanna Workforce Development Network
– Elimination of bus service on Saturday’s which currently serves more than 300 dependent citizens per month
“Even during these difficult times, it is the responsibility for government to provide essential services to the citizens we serve,” County Executive Craig remarked. “We will continue to do our best to provide exemplary service with limited resources and a reduction in staffing. Together we will move forward to keep Harford County as a place full of promise, opportunity and a great place to live, work and raise a family,” County Executive Craig added.
The FY 2010 budget is the 30th public budget worked on by County Executive Craig during his 30 years in public office. This was the 15th budget developed as an executive during his terms as mayor of Havre de Grace and now Harford County Executive.