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County lays off 16 more workers
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Stanislaus County’s workforce will be growing smaller – again – following Board of Supervisors action on Tuesday.

Supervisors approved eliminating 78 positions from the county’s 3,619 authorized positions, 16 of which are currently filled. Four new positions would be added, setting the county’s total authorized position count to 3,616, a 21 percent, 987 position decline from the county’s high point of 4,603 employees in 2007-2008.

“It was another somber day, but as we continue to go forward it’s necessary,” said Supervisor Vito Chiesa. “No one wants to cut jobs, and no one wants to decrease services, but it’s what the budget is dictating.”

The eliminated positions come from across the county – the auditor-controller’s office, behavioral health, county fire, child support services, the community services agency, the health services agency, the library, parks and recreation, planning and community, probation, and sheriff’s department.

The county’s code enforcement program will take a significant hit, losing four filled positions, leading to an increased response time for complaints. Supervisor Bill O’Brien opposed the cut to code enforcement officers, arguing that the proposed reductions would effectively eliminate the program.

Nine filled positions will be deleted from the General Services Facilities Maintenance Division – six maintenance workers and three janitors – and one mechanic will be deleted from the Fleet Services Division. A clerk and a middle manager in the chief executive’s office will also be cut.

Three of the new positions would come in behavioral health – an accountant, mental health clinician and clinical psychologist – and one would come in strategic business technology –a manager.

Further cuts to the county’s workforce will likely follow in June, as supervisors approved extending the county’s budget reduction strategy through 2015. Already, the county is warning of flat revenue in 2011-2012, coupled with a $14.9 million increase in retirement costs and a $1.9 million increase in workers’ compensation costs.

To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2005.