Pinal County Sheriff's Office Reduces Budget Deficit
The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office reports it slashed a $1.8 million budget deficit by more than half in 2017.
Sheriff Mark Lamb said balancing the budget was one of the top priorities when he took office last January.
“We took a business approach to it,” Lamb said. “We came in and we looked at the effectiveness of every position, and once we started to getting an idea and a feel for that, we started doing some restructuring.”
The department got rid of 13 positions and consolidated others for a $901,378 savings.
Some positions were vacant while others were eliminated.
“That’s a tough thing, but anytime you come in, ultimately, my responsibility is to the taxpayer and to the people of Pinal County,” Lamb said.
The office’s budget is almost $40 million to manage a county about the size of Connecticut and run the jail.
Sheriff’s Office employees did see an across-the-board 2 percent raise.
“We want people to know they can work here and expect the increases they deserve,” Lamb said.
The sheriff said he’s also worked to mend a previously strained relationship with county staff who advised his office on budget changes.
“We wouldn’t have had the success that we had without the county,” Lamb said. He said the department will continue to work on reducing its remaining $800,000 deficit.