Dunn calls on Executive to plan for avoiding layoff notices for criminal justice agencies

Plan Would Fully Fund Cops, Prosecutors and Jail Guards Through the First Part of 2011 to Maintain Stability

Metropolitan King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn today introduced a motion calling on the Executive to develop a plan by August 1 to avoid sending layoff notices to criminal justice employees until the voters have a chance to consider a potential November ballot measure.

“There are still a number of options in play for putting a funding measure on the November ballot,” said Dunn, chair of the Council’s Law, Justice, Health and Human Services Committee. “Our employees need to know that they have a job until the voters weigh in.”

The Executive is required by contract to give employees 90 days notice of layoffs. These notices would have to go out in October, before the results of any ballot measure would be known.

A last ditch effort to put a property tax on the August primary ballot died today, ensuring that any funding measure must appear in November. The last day to put a measure on the November ballot is July 26.

“I have heard what our criminal justice elected officials have said about maintaining continuity in their departments while the voters are given an opportunity to decide on services,” said Dunn. “This motion simply asks the Executive to develop a plan for maintaining that continuity and send it to the Council.”