TRENTON. GA (WDEF-TV) - Dade county was hit hard by the tornado outbreak 3 years ago--damage was extensive.
And although FEMA paid for most of the cleanup it was enough to keep the county from going ahead with a much needed tax increase.
Now, 3 years later..all efforts to make up a million dollar shortfall have failed.
But county leaders say time has run out.
TED RUMLEY, COUNTY EXECUTIVE , DADE COUNTY ( IN:14:46) "We're still increasing taxes , but we're not decreasing anything visable you'll see in services."
The commission held a half dozen meetings on a proposed 44% tax increase. It failed but they nwill now move to a 25.53 % increase in addition to a million dollars in cuts.
But 42 employees will be affected--36 of them let go.
DON TOWNSEND, COUNTY CLERK (IN: 29:55) "It's not just a job. Its more than a job. These are families, these are people that we work with every day ...and that we care for." "When we have to lay people off ..It really affects all of us. "
Constitutional officers are those leaders who are elected. They don't have to cut any services if they don't want to. But the court judges and the sheriff are doing it voluntarily.
Sheriff Ray Cross says 3 positions were left unfilled, and other officers will be shifted to different duties.
SHERIFF RAY CROSS, DADE COUNTY ( IN:35:51) "We're going to help anyway we can with this budget to help the citizens in the county with their taxes."
Every department of county government will be cut back to meet the 8.8 million dollar budget.
So how much is this going to cost the citizens?
TED RUMLEY. COUNTY EXECUTIVE (IN: 25:11) "If you don't have any exemptions at all, and you've got a 100-thousand dollar home..it'll be roughly 69-dollars and 44 cents a year."