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Battling the budget crunchPosted Friday, April 4, 2008, at 2:29 PM
County officials and commissioners are talking openly, and city officials should be, about the need to watch budgets and cut costs as national economic problems and high gas costs have more of an effect here.
Their first consideration should be making sure no employees lose their jobs.
Where, and how, to cut expenses or make money?
First, the county has been talking and talking about whether to sell or retain its growing number of empty or soon-to-be empty buildings such as the old Central High School and Bedford County Medical Center.
It'll be interesting to see if the county buildings could be sold or rented at all, considering the number of empty privately-owned buildings up for sale or lease.
And I wonder, in some cases, if the land under these buildings is worth more than the buildings themselves.
Would it be better to sell these buildings for whatever could be obtained, even if it seems low, and use the total amount to build one, centrally-located, modern and upgradeable structure for offices and courts?
The city could start by ditching the street sweeper, an expensive device which appears to me to simply redistribute the dust rather than actually clean anything. I'm not cricitizing at all anyone who drives the sweeper or suggesting anyone be laid off; let's make that clear.
What are your ideas on how local goverments, or individual departments within them, could cut costs with minimal impact to the public?
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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.
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