Cumberland Times-News

February 21, 2014

What would county do with money that was put aside?

To the Editor:
Cumberland Times-News

— This letter is in response to the article in the Feb. 14 issue of the Cumberland Times-News entitled “Commissioners planning for county’s financial future” (Page 1A).

Jason Bennett, the county’s finance director, suggested that the county use unrestricted funds to prepare for higher teacher pension costs.

However, the state is providing a disparity grant to help counties handle the costs, and to date Allegany County has received substantially more from the state than it needed to cover the cost of the shift — about $560,000 more.

There is no evidence that the state won’t provide disparity grants in the future.

If the state does provide the disparity grant in the future, then how might the county spend the $1.6 million each year that has been set aside?

Commissioner Michael McKay said, “We have to go forward and not backward.”

John Reuschlein, president

Allegany County Teachers’

Association