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Citizens invited to comment about potential $24 million impact on Washoe County

By ThisIsReno

WASHOE COUNTY NEWS RELEASE

Washoe County is inviting citizens to participate in a virtual community forum to answer the question, “How can Washoe County absorb an additional $24 million impact to its 2011-12 budget, if the Governor’s proposed budget is passed by the Legislature?”
Washoe County Commissioners recently approved the budget for next fiscal year, which addressed a budget deficit of $31.3 million deficit and which is about 21% less than just five years ago. Since 2007, the County has reduced spending by $154 million and has eliminated 769 jobs, in response to the recession and declining property tax and sales tax revenues. Reductions have come from department budget cuts, use of one-time reserves, and employee wage and benefit concessions. County budgets are now at 2005 levels, with staffing at 2004 or earlier levels.

The Governor’s proposed State budget retains 9 cents of local property tax from Washoe County taxpayers that was redirected by the 2009 Legislature to help the state address their budget deficit and scheduled to expire on June 30, 2011. The Governor’s budget also proposes to push down some State services to the County without funding sources. If the 2011 Legislature approves these proposals, Washoe County would have to absorb an additional $24 million deficit for each of the next two years. Washoe County needs input from citizens on how to absorb the additional deficit. To provide your comment on line, please visit the County’s website at: http://www.washoecounty.us/index/feedback.html