In an article posted to JSOnline this evening, writer Steve Schultze of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel outlines the staff cuts and budget cuts for the County Board that County Executive Chris Abele has proposed in his County Budget. Of course the majority of these cuts are required under the law passed by the Republicans earlier this year with the full support and consent of the county exec (Act 14). From JSOnline:
The Milwaukee County Board will lose three-fourths of its staff and almost 40% of its budget next year, when cuts to the board’s resources ordered under a new state law kick in.
At least, that’s what would happen under the budget proposed by County Executive Chris Abele, a prime backer of the law clamping limits on the board.
Supervisors said they may have some wiggle room to make some adjustments to what Abele suggested for the board’s budget.
And Abele’s budget could be targeted for cuts by the board, despite a provision in the new law its author said was aimed at preventing retaliatory action against Abele by the board at budget time.
Abele’s budget lops $2.5 million and 28 staff positions from the board for next year, leaving it $4.1 million and 11 staffers.
The reductions for the Milwaukee County Board are further moderated because nine staff jobs now under the board would shift to other departments — four research analysts, four committee clerks and a graphics designer.
Those staffers will still serve the board, though they’ll answer to other department heads.
Each of the 18 supervisors had authority to hire a legislative assistant this year, but several of those aides have left in the wake of Act 14. Abele’s budget calls for whittling the number of assistants to four, which would mean four or five supervisors would share one assistant.
The board will get a chance to rearrange the staffing suggested by Abele, said Supervisor Theo Lipscomb Sr.
Well, although that seems excessive it is within the confines of Act 14…but as Capper says…there is more…there always is more”
Abele cut the board’s budget by $45,000 below what the new state limit would have allowed. Lipscomb said that may be changed by the board.
“Yes, I think that was petty,” Lipscomb said.
Board Chairwoman Marina Dimitrijevic said Abele’s extra $45,000 cut came as a surprise. She said it was never mentioned by Abele or other county staff.
“Didn’t he get everything he want with this Republican bill?” Dimitrijevic said, referring to Act 14.
Abele said he won’t veto the $45,000 if the board decides to add that.
$45,000? Really? “Yes, I think that is petty!