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Mecklenburg County asks departments for deeper budget cut scenario

Harry Jones' new request doesn't mean departments will necessarily lose 20-percent of their budgets next year to make up a projected $90 million deficit. That could happen, but the County's Budget Office says it's easier to start with a smaller spending plan and add items if the money is there. Mary Wilson, the Director of the County's Department of Social Services says cuts of that size will be tough, especially when need has increased by 30-percent. Still, she says it may be possible to trim several million from the department without cutting services. "If we can get that type of technology efficiency then we can probably do more with less and that will position us for what we believe is going to be a continued tsunami of people coming through our door," says Wilson. Mecklenburg County has ordered immediate cuts of 15-percent for most departments to make up a 57-million deficit this year.