Fitzgerald Statement on the Release of the 2011 County Financial Report

PITTSBURGH – Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald issued the following statement in response to the release of the 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR):

“We are not surprised today by anything that was reported in the CAFR.  We have a challenge before us which we must all work together to address.  Our $6 million fund balance is the lowest it has ever been.  Although we have controlled costs and streamlined government, we have also seen decreases in state and federal funding that we have had to contend with at the county level.

“The one mil increase that was approved in December will prevent us from having to lay off 1,000 employees, but we have much more work to do to ensure the county’s continued financial health. My budget office began meeting with each department last month to review their budgets, determine if there are additional savings and efficiencies that can be found and to rein in any costs that are within our control.  They will be meeting on an ongoing basis throughout the year to determine what savings can be implemented and any other corrective actions that need to be taken.  I have met with and briefed County Council, the Courts and the independently-elected officials, asking them to join me in working together to address this budget issue and look forward to their cooperation.  Additionally, I have implemented a hiring freeze for all non-essential employees.  Our directors and employees are already doing more with less and we’re now asking even more of them.

We will continue to explore opportunities for additional sources of revenue, pursue efficiencies that can result in savings and work towards making our county government as efficient and effective as possible.”

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