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Governments should merge to save money
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I read constantly about the budget crisis in Hall County. It is the same in almost all of Georgia's 159 counties. Commissioners have suggested department budget cuts, facility closings, layoffs and almost every idea one can conceive except the need to consolidate and eliminate duplications of services.

One example: Combine the Hall County and Gainesville School systems. This can also work in other counties with multiple school systems. Think of the reduction of duplicated personnel, departments and services. Quite a savings.

On the state level, consolidate the 159 counties to one third (53) or half (80). Too much government is not the answer; smarter and more responsible government is needed.

Combine the 35 colleges and universities in the university system to, let's say, three research universities and 10 regional universities with multiple campus locations. Again less management and more utilization of staff and departments. Economy of scale! More use of resources.

There are many more examples of cost saving consolidations and privatizing that will save money and increase service to taxpayers.

Most government entities seem to exist only as personal kingdoms for politicians to increase their power and to have perks to hand out at re-election time.

Time has passed for this type of government and if we are to survive, we must make drastic changes. We are out of money, it has all been taken.

Richard Hamil

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