Milwaukee County 2012 budget hearings, Day 6 (10/17/2011)

I took really extensive notes and participated in today’s session. So you might think that i’d have more typed up right now… but I took the notes the old-fashioned way—pen and paper. I’ll go off memory for the more interesting stuff.

COUNTY BOARD 2012 BUDGET BLAST: OCTOBER 17, 2011

Milwaukee, WI – The Milwaukee County Board’s Finance & Audit Committee is holding a series of public meetings throughout October on the

County Executive’s 2012 Recommended Budget

Each day, the Committee reviews a number of specific departments and items in the budget. Today, the Committee reviewed the following budgets:

• Milwaukee County Transit/Paratransit System – Amendment approved 5-1 (No: Thomas) to increase the commuter value pass premiums by $6 per quarter

This would raise the cost to $201, if I am not mistaken.There was questioning of why the most dedicated riders would be stuck with the sole cost increase. Also, many paratransit riders and their advocates came to talk about how difficult a steep increase in the paratransit fare would be for them.

• Civil Air Patrol

• DOT – Airport

• DOT – Highway Division

• DOT – Transportation Services

• DOT – Fleet Management

• DOT – Director’s Office

• DAS – Facilities Management

I believe the county security guards fell under this segment. They are slated to be replaced by contracted security guars from Wackenhut Services. I made a request for information on the turnover rate of Wackenhut employees working in County facilities. There is a small chance that these jobs will not be privatized. But if we don’t do that, where would the projected $100,000 savings come from? As Supervisor Romo West noted, it seems that privatizations save money in the first year, but cost more in the second year and thereafter. I do want to see more than anecdotal evidence of this, and at the same time, I do not support the privatization of these or other jobs.

• DAS – Architectural, Engineering and Environmental Services

• DAS – Water Utility

The Committee will continue its review of budgets and consideration of amendments throughout October in Room 203-R of the Milwaukee County Courthouse.

Click here to access the 2012 budget meeting schedule

Click here to listen to live audio from the meetings

(available while meetings are in progress)

Click here to access the Budget Overview presented by County Board Staff

The County Board of Supervisors, under the leadership of Chairman Lee Holloway, will adopt the 2012 Budget on Monday, November 7 at 8:30 a.m. in Room 200 of the Milwaukee County Courthouse.

The County Board’s annual Public Hearing on the 2012 Budget is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Monday, October 31 at the Washington Park Senior Center, located at 4420 W. Vliet Street in Milwaukee.

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Author: Jason Haas

Jason is an elected member of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors, occasionally moonlights as an amateur gardener, and is a proud father of two, or three, depending on how you do the math.