Commissioners try and figure way to balance budget - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Nick Kenney

Commissioners try and figure way to balance budget

Shelby County Commissioners are trying to figure out how to balance the budget as several hundred jobs are on the line.

In a fourth floor room, the county's budget committee tossed out one idea after another, brainstorming solutions to a budget crisis.

"We need to cut our Capital Improvements Program. We need to get out of things we don't need to be doing, like the golf course at Orgill Park," commissioner Mike Ritz said.

From widespread cuts in service to targeting the 1,077 county employees eligible to retire.

"We got enough people on the payroll that's eligible for retirement that can retire. We can get ourselves out of it without cutting jobs," commissioner Sidney Chism said.

Some argue finding more money is key.

"We can't drive everything with property tax because property taxes are too high. We need some alternative revenue source," commissioner Steve Mulroy said.

To hammer home his point, Mulroy proposed a resolution asking state legislators to allow the county to enact an occupational privilege tax of up to eight dollars a month on everyone who works in Shelby County and earns more than the median income of 28-thousand dollars a year.

The resolution did not pass committee, but will go before the entire commission anyway.

Just one more idea in a brainstorming session unlikely to end anytime soon.

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