July 7, 2010 – Hilo, Hawaii
Video by David Corrigan | Voice of Tim Bryan
All was quiet at the county buildings here in Hilo on Friday.
Parking lots were empty, offices were closed…
That’s because Friday was the first county Furlough Friday of the new fiscal year.
The freeze in government operations will save the county $7 million annually.
These folks looking to access the county motor vehicle services were unaware of the shutdown, but took the news in stride.
A few days before, Mayor Billy Kenoi called a press conference to help get the word out, and to go over the details with local media.
The furloughs will occur on the first and third Fridays of each month through June 2011.
Along with the motor vehicle services, closures include:
…. Real Property Tax Division offices
…. Elderly programs and facilities
…. the corporation counsel
…. and the mayor’s office
Public saftey services like police and fire will remain in operation on the furlough days.
Critical wastewater treatment operations will also continue operating 24 hours a day without interruption.
Transfer Station hours will not change.
Bus services will remain in operation, although Mass Transit Agency offices will be closed.
County pools, the Municipal Golf Course, and the Panaewa Rainforest Zoo will all be open.
And while the staffs at County gymnasiums will be on furlough, the gyms may still be utilized by the public on Fridays, as long as reservations with staff are made prior to the furlough day.