The Hall County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to temporarily suspend all contributions to employees’ retirement funds to save costs while sales tax collections remain low.
"We’ve probably eaten into our reserves as much as the commission would feel comfortable with," said Assistant County Administrator Phil Sutton.
Hall County makes contributions to employees’ 401(a) and 457 programs. The county matches a percentage of the money employees choose to put into their 457 account, while the county contributes 4 percent of employees’ salary to the 401(a) account.
Trimming retirement contributions will save the county about $2.2 million this year.
Hall County Administrator Charley Nix said he feels this is the best way to cut costs without affecting the services the county provides, raising taxes or cutting employees’ "take-home pay."
County employees currently take one furlough day each month and will not receive merit increases this year in response to the economic climate.
"This is the best solution on a temporary basis," Commissioner Steve Gailey said.