It appears the Park County Commissioners are serious about the upcoming $1.9 million budget deficit staring them in the face.
We hope they are serious enough.
The commissioners have scheduled a work session next week to discuss budget recommendations and their implementation.
That is a good first step, but we feel more serious and pressing measures may need to be adopted depending on the amount of state funding as will be determined by the 2020 Wyoming legislature.
This year was bad enough as the commissioners had to pull $1.3 million from reserves and delay an additional $850,000 in road maintenance.
A budget committee proposal reported to the commissioners on Dec. 17 found ways to save $1.5 million, but that is still short of what is needed. Additionally many of those savings wouldn’t happen for a few years.
Commissioner Joe Tilden said the budget committee found no “fat” when it comes to staffing levels.
“We’re pretty much staffed at minimum level to maintain the serves we now maintain,” he said.
In the December report to the commissioners, the budget committee proposed a 3-6 month waiting period be instituted for rehiring of all “nonessential” positions.
We believe if that policy is adopted, the commissioners may be able to find some “fat” and reduce some staffing.
Unfortunately the county offices may not be able to maintain services as they presently do.
This needs to be done. The county can’t continue to operate at a deficit and borrow from reserves.
Both commissioners Jake Fulkerson and Lloyd Thiel have pledged they will not dip into reserves again.
We hope that is the case.