Franklin County leaders feeling the budget pinch

By Arnold Wyrick - bio | email

BENTON, IL (KFVS) - Illinois' financial crisis is causing pain for county leaders, as they try to figure out how to deal with budget shortfalls.

Franklin County Treasurer John Gulley is crunching the numbers for the upcoming fiscal year and he says things aren't looking good for 2011.

"We've seen where the state has cut some of the reimbursements we're accustomed too," Gulley said.

"In addition our sales tax revenue is down because of the economy. Our income tax payments that we receive from the state are anywhere from three to four months behind," Gulley added.

"Our income tax payments are the single largest source of revenue for the county," he said.

Gulley says the state is cutting funds for the State's Attorney's office, the supervisor of assessments and the public defenders office.

Those cuts combined with the slumping numbers in sales tax revenue add up to a lot of money.

"It looks like right now in our preliminary numbers, we're looking at about $500,000 to $600,000 deficit," said Gulley.

Some county residents have a few cost cutting ideas of their own for county leaders.

"They need to do away with cutting the fat where they can, before you start getting rid of employees," said Darrell Snyder.

"I think programs would be better then people, people need jobs we're already in a slump as far as jobs go," said Steve Stone.

Gulley says county leader are trying to hold the line when it comes to workers.

"The county board has been very adamant from the beginning that layoffs are the very last resort in this process,"  Gulley said.

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