first_imgNo real surprises were in store for Clark County commissioners Friday when they met with Administrator Bill Barron and senior staffers for an annual retreat.The three-hour meeting at Legacy Salmon Creek was for commissioners, who set county policy, to give Barron guidance on what should be the priorities for 2012.Budget Director Jim Dickman called the general fund budget “stable but still fragile.” He said that since the county remains behind the national average in economic recovery, he predicts a flat revenue forecast for the 2013-14 budget.The county’s general fund budget, projected at $280 million for two years, has been cut by $62 million since the 2007-08 budget.Expenses were further decreased by reducing the hours and pay of about 200 employees after 270 positions were cut. Most employees started paying 7 percent of their health insurance premiums this month, which will save the county $1.6 million.Those savings mean the county’s not in a position to have to do layoffs, said Deputy Administrator Glenn Olson.Olson has been leading an effort to bring costs in line with revenues, which have slowed permanently.The money the county lost with the repeal of the state motor vehicle excise tax a decade ago was masked by the housing boom; when the housing market crashed, the reality of county revenues settled in, Olson said.last_img read more