Whose Department Budget Will Make the Cut?

By Scott Sarvay

September 22, 2011 Updated Sep 22, 2011 at 11:48 PM EDT

ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) - After two days of budget discussions and appeals the Allen County government has decided to trim more than five million dollars from the 2012 budget.

Originally Allen County Council wanted Sheriff Ken Fries to make ends meet spending $1.4-million less than the 2011 budget.

But eventually council agreed to a much smaller cut of $363,000.

The sheriff had worried his officers might be forced to pay some of their retirement contributions, essentially amounting to a 3-percent pay cut.

Council’s revision didn’t make that necessary.

Sheriff Ken Fries says, “I think it is important that we keep the employees in mind. They're out there doing a very difficult job, and what I hope is that council looks at and understands that we have cut everything we can cut. We cut $363,000 from our budget, If we need some of the rainy day fund lets use it.”

There was even better news for the county election board.

That department said a proposed $144,000 cut threatened the ability to conduct a fair Presidential election.

Council wound up giving the election board more money than it asked for.

That was done, in part, to assure large votes centers can be used in the 2014 election.

At this time the final budget figure for 2012 sits around $78-million.

That’s $5.3-million below the 2011 budget total.

Allen County’s Rainy Day Fund currently sits at roughly $17-million, but roughly one million dollars of it will have to be pulled out to make up for a revenue shortfall in 2012.

The budget will get finalized during the October 20th council meeting.

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