news from the Prosecutor's Office

Prosecutor's Office Reduces Budget
June 22, 2010

Robin Piper, Butler County Prosecutor believes the budget crisis is real. The Commissioner’s Office recently announced that office holders needed to reduce their budgets because there is a $3.5 million dollar shortfall in the general fund. The County Auditor has indicated that the Commissioners’ forecast may be conservative and that the shortfall could be much more than the Commissioners originally estimated.

“No matter whose numbers you use, the budget crisis is an extreme storm approaching our horizon. Some might blame wasteful spending, reduced sales revenues, or escalating costs, but one thing is clear, it is going to take all the muscle we can muster to steer a course diverting this rapidly approaching storm” said Prosecutor Piper.

Today, Prosecutor Piper announces his office has begun a furlough for classified workers and a pay reduction for non-classified workers. In addition, Prosecutor Piper has eliminated five more positions, four of which were assistant prosecutors. Last budget cycle, the Prosecutor laid off one assistant prosecutor and reduced one staff member to part-time status. With these additional lay-offs, the total reduction is 6-½ jobs.

Last year, the assistant prosecutor that was laid off was in the Juvenile Division. At one time, there were 12 assistant prosecutors in the Juvenile Division, now there are only 9. The assistant prosecutors recently laid off are from the Criminal Non-Support, Civil, Appellate, and Criminal Divisions.

In addressing the consequences of the budget cuts, Prosecutor Piper stated, “People are being moved around and asked to handle more work, with new responsibilities. Unfortunately, to stabilize the budget, it means furloughs and lay-offs. There is no choice but to reduce the size of government in response to the estimated short-falls in the general fund. Among other things, the Commissioners must reduce inefficiency, excessive salaries, and duplicated services with a vengeance. I believe all of the office holders are prepared to sacrifice, as long as the Commissioners respond in kind.”

As a result of the furloughs and lay-offs, the Prosecutor’s Office has cut their budget $288,000.

“Tension is high within the office due to the uncertainty of employment and the volume of workload being distributed among remaining staff. The Prosecutor’s Office can’t possibly cut more without imploding. We didn’t create the problem, but we’re trying to be part of the solution . . . even though it hurts. It is going to be extremely difficult because citizens, law enforcement, and the Court will still expect the highest standards of professionalism . . . and we will continue to deliver, it just means we will have to work harder,” concluded Prosecutor Piper.

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For more information contact the Prosecutor's Office at (513) 887-3474
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