Thurston County commissioners have extended the deadline for public comment on the preliminary 2015 county budget to Oct. 24.
Originally, the three-member board expected to close public comment and adopt the proposed $294 million budget this week. However on Monday, staff members learned that a technical glitch had affected some of the county’s online budget materials, officials say.
“Apparently, some figures in the online budget document displayed improperly, making it hard to understand those parts of the budget,” commission chair Karen Valenzuela said in a news release. “County staff are revising the tables and we want to make sure people have time to review the corrected budget and comment if they would like.”
The revised budget materials are expected to be posted by close of day Friday (Oct. 10) at www.co.thurston.wa.us/budget/.
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This year, elected officials and department heads were directed by the commissioners to develop a spending plan that was frozen at 2014 levels. That means they had to absorb increases in medical costs, salary increases and other inflationary costs as part of the budget.
Thurston County Sheriff John Snaza told commissioners at a public hearing on Monday that his department couldn’t absorb any more costs without losing deputies, and affecting public safety. He said he won’t open the new Accountability and Restitution Center during 2015 if the commissioners won’t fund his law enforcement budget adequately.
Comments can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org; mailed to Attn: Commissioners, 2000 Lakeridge Drive SW, Olympia, WA, 98502, or given over the phone at 360-786-5440.
The commissioners have scheduled a budget work session on Oct. 27 to discuss possible modifications, and expect to adopt the spending plan on Oct. 28.