Contra Costa County Narrowly Avoids Public Safety Layoffs

MARTINEZ (KCBS) — County public safety departments in Contra Costa have managed to narrowly avoid layoffs in the fifth consecutive year of budget reductions, but this may be short lived.

Just last month layoffs were in store for major county public safety departments in the latest round of budget cuts, including the sheriff’s department and the district attorney’s office.

County Administrator David Twa told Contra Costa supervisors that new funds and department restructuring have taken layoffs out of the picture — for now.

“The bad news is we still don’t have all of the results from the state,” he said.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

County Probation Officer Phillip Kader said he was looking at losing 40 positions, but due to Senate Bill 678, geared towards probation programs will funnel about three million dollars to Kader’s office.

“Probation in the last four years, as you know, has seen about a 20 percent reduction in staff,” he said. “But we’re pleased about the SB 678 funding.”

One of the biggest concerns in the county now is the release of thousands of inmates, as mandated by the recent Supreme Court decision about overcrowding of prisons in California. Those inmates could end up in county facilities, putting further strain on the system.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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