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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, December 15, 2003
Don Krupp, Chief Administrative Officer, 360-786-5440
John Bartz, Budget Director, 360-754-2959

Thurston County Commissioners Adopt 2004 Budget

OLYMPIA – Thurston County Commissioners today (12/15) adopted a budget for the coming year that is down slightly from 2003 levels.  The spending plan also calls for continued elimination of employee positions.

The general fund portion of the budget is up slightly at $61,450,677.  That's about two percent higher than the 2003 budget of $60,515,705.  However, the overall budget for 2004 is $314,039,358 - down about $2.3 Million from 2003.

The 2004 budget continues to reflect reductions necessitated by citizen-adopted revenue cutting initiatives.  The spending plan includes elimination of 20 employee positions.  That means the number of full time equivalent positions for the county in 2004 will be 1,122, compared to 1,142 at the end of 2003.

County Administrator Don Krupp says the 2004 budget was formulated with a lot of hard work by county employees.  "  The Board of County Commissioners, other elected officials and department directors and managers worked very hard to come up with cost savings and expenditure reductions to make the 2004 budget work.  Rank and file county employees continue to do more with less to deliver vital services to Thurston County residents."  Krupp says more reductions are on the horizon.  "We have a budget situation where property tax revenue is limited to 1% a year.  Inflation, the expense of insurance, union contracts and other costs will go up at a much higher rate.  That means we will have to make cuts every year for the foreseeable future.  The challenge for us is to make those cuts as painless as possible for both county employees and county residents.

Those who wish to find out more about the 2004 Thurston County budget can visit the county's web site at http://www.co.thurston.wa.us/budget/Index.htm

County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3