Bernalillo County looks to balance 2018 budget

Correction below. 

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Bernalillo County Board of Commissioners will be meeting with all county department heads on Tuesday morning to explore options in balancing the 2018 Fiscal Year budget. Currently, the county is facing an $8 million shortfall.

In the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting, some of the problems they site for the shortfall stem from a drop in funding from the state and federal governments.

According to Communication Services Director Tia Bland, on March 28, the County Commission passed a gross receipt tax increase which is expected to offset the deficit.

Some other cost-cutting measures have been outlined in the agenda and it appears that a cost of living increase is out while an increase in health plan costs are up. One other concern for the county is at the Metropolitan Detention Center.

As of 2016, costs to operate the facility make up nearly a quarter of the county’s budget. The inmate population at MDC is down considerably, but commissioners said they haven’t seen costs go down.

The final budget is scheduled to go back to commissioners by April 25 with a final approval from the state by June.

Correction: An earlier version of this story said the budget deficit was nearly $20 million however the deficit is $8 million. This story has been corrected to reflect the accurate budget deficit. 

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