Friday, March 11, 2011

Texas Budget Train Cutting through Concho Valley

Concho Valley counties will see an average $830 hit per person under proposed Texas budget cuts.  The cuts are relative to state funds expended in 2010-2011  The breakdown by county is:

(Clicking on the graph will enlarge the image for better viewing.)

One might expect the Concho Valley Council of Governments to weigh in on the issue.  An economic hit of $230 million warrants comment, especially from an organization charged with regional economic development.  So far, CVCOG has been publicly silent.  That doesn't mean they aren't working behind closed doors on behalf of stressed local school systems and ailing hospital districts.  The question is how they plan to help.

Update 4:05 pm:  SAISD announced it would eliminate teacher positions through attrition and not renewing poor performers.  It didn't say how many teacher positions would be eliminated to achieve budget savings of over 10%..  How many losing work will also lose health insurance for their families, layering stress on Shannon Medical Center?  Shannon already faces cuts in Medicaid, CHIP and UPL Program payments.  As the Concho Valley's safety net hospital, it sees 80% of the uninsured.  How many people will SAISD add to the nearly 200 newly uninsured from the City of San Angelo?  It bears watching.

Update 4:55 pm:  Kiah Collier stated 45 teacher positions would be eliminated, 25 via retirement and 20 through non-renewals.  How many other district positions will disappear?  How many people will lose health insurance as a result?

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