Proposed Big Island budget cuts spending 3%
HILO, Hawaii — Big Island Mayor Billy Kenoi’s initial budget proposal of $375 million is 3 percent lower than the current budget that expires June 30.
But Kenoi told the Hawaii County Council on Monday that property tax rates must be raised, positions must be cut and workers must be furloughed in order to make ends meet.
Kenoi says although his proposed budget is $11.7 million less than the current budget, the figure doesn’t begin to reflect “the painful effects of the budget cuts.”
The biggest casualties will be the Hilo-based Hawaii County Band and the West Hawaii Band. Both would be eliminated under Kenoi’s money plan. The move would save $347,000 by eliminating 34 positions in Hilo and 11 more in Kona.
The deadline for Kenoi’s final version of the budget is May 5.
Information from: Hawaii Tribune-Herald, http://www.hilohawaiitribune.com