MONTCALM COUNTY, Mich. — Commissioners in Montcalm County plan to cut nearly 20 jobs in hopes of solving a looming county-wide budget crisis.
Monday, commissioners approved a new budget meant to get them back on track as a $1.5 million deficit looms. Roughly 20 people will lose their jobs in order to balance a budget with a general fund that's been operating in the red for the past eight years.
The new budget will save roughly $330,000 annually, and it's expected to help the county climb out of the red over seven years. The cuts come after revelations that expenses for the county had been outpacing revenue by an average of $2 million annually since 2012. It's something commissioners say won't happen again.
"This didn’t all fall on the controller's office, there were checks and balances that weren’t in place," said Patrick Carr, chairman of the board of commissioners "I’m confident that we’ve got the right people in place, the right protocols that we’ve adopted that this won’t happen again."
Public safety will take the biggest hit with 10 layoffs, while three positions will be cut from the county's Judicial Services. Five positions in general government, and two positions between the Commission on Aging, and Friend of the Court will also be cut. Many in attendance did not agree with the decisions made.