Five times between here and mid-September, the Lane County Commission will hold meetings around the county to discuss what should become of Lane County government.
It's a more practical question than you might think. With funding (especially federal) diminished, the county is in a budget squeeze, and the commissioners are divided over how to deal with it - even over such basic matters as whether employment or compensation should be trimmed first. So each commissioner will be hosting, starting on Wednesday and evening September 12, a public meeting on what priorities ought to be. All of that will precede the commission's first round of talks (earlier than usual, in October) on next year's budget.
Voters here have recently, and a couple of times, rejected income tax increases - so that option appears to be out. But what's in?
The Eugene Register-Guard has a useful overview out today on the commission's split viewpoints (though two commissioners weren't talking) and the options before it. It's a good look at the kind of discussions many of the federally-reliant counties will be having in the months ahead.