Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana speaks with Eyewitness News about his decision to lay off dozens of officers from his department.
On Tuesday, Caruana announced he was letting go of 64 courthouse security and correctional officers. He says it’s just one move he has to make in order to meet county leaders’ request that he shave as much as $4 million from his budget.
“I understand it’s a business,” said Caruana. “They’re looking out for the budget. I get it. But, then I have to [lay] off these deputies and plan for the worst. God, I hope it gets better, then we bring them back.”
The Sheriff’s penny-pinching is a result of Winnebago County’s $7 million budget deficit. Caruana says as many as 100 people in his department could lose their jobs. The Winnebago County Board is expected to vote next Thursday on a final budget.