"In every single home we've had to figure out how to do things differently," said Savage. "Many other states have changed that to take it out of the state instead of locally."
The 2011 budget is estimated to use between $8 to $9 million from the County's fund balance, but Savage said that it is a sustainable amount to allocate. Currently the fund balance is at $35 million and the 2010 budget allocated $6 million from the fund balance. Savage also said the fund balance was able to return to the existing balance after using the previous $6 million.
"We have a healthy fund balance and it gives us the ability to budget in a conservative way," said Savage. "We expect that in a year from now we won't fully utilize what we'll allocate in this year's budget."
Savage said the budget is presented to the Legislature by County Manager Kathleen Rooney and over the next month legislators will look through the budget to see if there are any additional savings to be found.
Savage said one shared service the Legislature is working hard to attain is a central dispatch to help lower costs for the county and municipalities.""