St. Joseph County furloughs employees

St. Joseph County government will begin the week with nearly 70 employees furloughed from their jobs.

During a special meeting Friday, St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners approved letters of understanding with the various unions to which impacted employees belong.

With projected 2020 revenue expected to fall way short of what was budgeted for the 12-month fiscal year, commissioners agreed it was their only option.

For now, the measure will remain in place through the end of the month, county administrator Teresa Doehring said, adding that all affected employees will continue to receive health-insurance benefits and MERS service credit toward their pension. Impacted employees will also have the option to seek unemployment while on furlough.

Doehring originally said the move would impact between 35 and 45 employees. The final tally, however, shows 67 people from four different unions were affected: AFSCME general unit, AFSCME family court division, probate court and district court employees association.

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