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Layoffs Possible Next Year in Pr. Geo.'s County

Rosalind Helderman

County officials in Prince George's might need to lay off 400 to 500 county employees next year--more than 7 percent of the county's total workforce, according to an internal document obtained by the Washington Post.

The document was presented to state lawmakers by County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) at a closed-door meeting last week. The document was handed out by Johnson's aides and then collected at the end of the meeting. Johnson indicated to lawmakers that without additional revenues, the county's budget shortfall will gape to $73 million for the year that begins July 1, 2009.

To close the gap, Johnson and his aides told lawmakers deep cuts would be necessary, Possibilities include a virtual salary freeze for employees, a repeat of this year's two weeks of unpaid leave for employees, and the layoffs.

According to the document the layoffs could affect a wide range of services, including health inspections, building permitting, animal control, library staffing, child immunizations and prenatal care.

Participants at the meeting have said Johnson urged lawmakers not to worsen the county's situation by cutting state aid when the legislative session begins in January. He also suggested he might request that lawmakers grant local leaders wider authorities to raise taxes to boost revenues.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  November 19, 2008; 12:39 PM ET
Categories:  Rosalind Helderman  
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Comments

As a single mother, with a daughter in college and an county employee, I have never been a situation, so dismal it's gotten to the point where I'm looking to relocate out of the county as well as out of the county government. We need to have some explanation as a county resident and employee where did all this money go.

Posted by: glj703 | November 19, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

As a former County Government employee I can say that the County government has too many programs that are not needed and should be dismantled. County government can not provide everything to everybody. Police, Fire, Libraries, Schools, roads, mass transit and some social services. Get rid of the rest!!!! Its time they take a good hard look at everything and start cutting.

Posted by: billnokesville | November 19, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

As a single mother, with a daughter in college and an county employee, I have never been a situation, so dismal it's gotten to the point where I'm looking to relocate out of the county as well as out of the county government. We need to have some explanation as a county resident and employee where did all this money go.

The money went to paying you're salary and benefits. It goes to pay for the ones that choose not to work. Welfare and child support are probably the largest budget drains in the state. As long as the local democratic Gov. wants to involve them self's in every aspect of our lives the cost goes up, up and up. It's time to get back to the basics of governing.

Posted by: askgees | November 19, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

The money went to paying you're salary and benefits. It goes to pay for the ones that choose not to work. Welfare and child support are probably the largest budget drains in the state. As long as the local democratic Gov. wants to involve them self's in every aspect of our lives the cost goes up, up and up. It's time to get back to the basics of governing.


It takes courage to say no...know any politicians with courage? Go along to get along, that their motto, and do they get along!

Posted by: fly66 | November 19, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Didn't the county just celebrate a AAA bond rating because we have $300 million in reserves as well as $40 million extra squirreled away from when the economy was good?

In these tough economic times, when social services and constituent needs are going up as foreclosures and unemployment rise, does it really make sense to be laying off and furloughing county employees, who mostly live in the county, and cutting programs that more and more people are going to need to use?

Posted by: SinnedNoir | November 19, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

Surely you are joking. Welfare has never been a large portion of anyone's budget. You would do well to read this: http://www.newsbatch.com/welfarenews.html

Welfare rolls in MD are down 70% in the past decade. Place the blame where it needs to be, the individuals responsible for managing the budget have wasted it on projects like the ICC, building new county and state buildings that weren't necessary, and very much unnecessary spending for a wide range non-beneficial programs, as well as failing to ensure what money is allocated is spent in the best way. Maryland pours money into the schools, yet the results suck. Perhaps increasing the budget in this area without making major structural changes would not be a good idea.

There is no way in the over taxed jurisdiction of PG in which I currently live that ANYONE should have to be laid off. That this is the case shows that Mush mouth and the council have blown the money on many ill advised projects.

For example, I love the National Harbor, but was it REALLY necessary for the public capital investment? Would it have been impossible to do it for less? Why is MVA so inefficient? For example, I could do almost anything driving related online when I was in VA - reducing the workload required in the DMV. Why is MD's online capability so much less?

We need to hold the elected officials accountable in the next election. And anyone who voted for JJ or certain council members should just be quiet.

_________

The money went to paying you're salary and benefits. It goes to pay for the ones that choose not to work. Welfare and child support are probably the largest budget drains in the state. As long as the local democratic Gov. wants to involve them self's in every aspect of our lives the cost goes up, up and up. It's time to get back to the basics of governing.

Posted by: askgees | November 19, 2008 5:24 PM

Posted by: keirreva | November 19, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

An investigation is needed to find out what happened to the money. TRIM or no TRIM mu PG County property taxes have gone way up.

Posted by: confused1 | November 21, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

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