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Balanced budget requires job cuts

  • Friday, August 22, 2014

“We have a balanced budget” and this includes eliminating two positions, Mayor Rodney Giles told the Andrews council members at an Andrews Town Council special workshop Aug. 18.

Andrews CPA Wanda Charping said the major reductions came from a change in water and sewer charges, which went down the last two months of the year.

“And the annual salary for both eliminated positions was $19,240 and $6,000 for insurance and the second position, $18,000 plus $8,000 for health insurance,” she said.

“This is a sensitive issue,” Councilwoman Sudha Patel said. “Are we going to look at all employees to evaluate which ones are good, which are keepers while some need to go since they are not producing to their potential? What are we going to base the decision on?”

Andrews Police Chief K. Capers said he reduced the police department budget by $71,792.

“The cuts will balance the budget. We’ve been doing this since February,” Mayor Giles said. “Let’s balance the budget first.”

“We need to get back on track,” Councilwoman Patsy Greene said while David Tisdale said he thinks it’s a good budget.

The workshop discussed each department’s budget individually.

In the fire department, “they have a brand new fire truck, all new equipment, they added some more volunteers and Stockton is now the inspector so we don’t have to go outside to get an inspector. So that department is pretty much done,” the mayor said.

He said in the police department, “We purchased new cars, which we had to have, they got new uniforms and some new guns.”

Lastly was the water department. “They used to have 32 people in that department, now they have a lot less,” Giles said. “We don’t have the funding to hire 10 or 15 more people.”

On the subject of water, Patel announced plans for advertising to accompany the water bill. As concerns were raised over handling the machine, attorney Eleazer Carter said the machine automatically does the job.

“It’s a great benefit as you are pushing your business in town,” he said.

Patel said she will put a package together so the council can see how it will work.

Town council members in attendance included Mayor Rodney Giles, Patsy Greene, Eddie Lee, Mattie McGee, Sudha Patel, David Tisdale, and Town Administrator Muretta Dorsey.

The budget is expected to pass at the next town council meeting, Aug. 21.

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