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Editorial

How many finance managers are needed?

Shelton-Mason County Journal of Shelton, Washington

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Editor, the Journal



Commissioner Sheldon has said in recent public department head and Commission meetings that the Commissioners need "their own" finance and budget director to analyze the operations of the county. This is astonishing, considering that the very same position was disestablished several years ago by current commissioners Sheldon and Ring Erickson.

"Board of Commissioners Proceedings June 23, 2009 10.1 Cmmr. Gallagher made a motion to reorganize the County administrative positions to combine the Central Operations Director position with the Budget and Finance Director position.

The motion died due to lack of a second.

Cmmr. Ring Erickson clarified that the Central Operations Director position was abolished last week and part of the reorganization is to abolish the Budget and Finance Director position.

Cmmr. Ring Erickson/Gal-lagher moved and seconded to eliminate the Budget and Finance Director position effective July 1, 2009. Motion carried unanimously. RE-aye; S-aye; G-aye.

Cmmr. Ring Erickson noted that this is part of a broader reorganization to merge some aclministrative duties to make the County more efficient and avoid duplication. The Board will be looking at how much administration they need to best serve the public.

Cmmr. Sheldon mentioned that this is also a cost saving measure."

Two and one-half years later, Commissioner Sheldon believes that the reports of the Treasurer's and Auditor's staffs need to be completely reviewed and analyzed by another independent staff member reporting directly to the three commissioners. I believe that each of the county staff members, whether elected or hired, is performing their duties in the best interests of the county taxpayers and that no employee owes or pays allegiance to any elected official. Another set of eyes on the commissioners' staff payroll won't fix what Commissioner Sheldon's problem might be.

Sheldon has contended in recent weekly staff meetings and commission meetings that he hadn't been briefed on issues with which he now disagrees, specifically 2012 Sheriffs Office current expense and traffic unit

Original Publication Date: January 19, 2012



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