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Deputies will hold info picket

The Island County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild will hold an informational picket outside the Island County Annex Building when county commissioners meet next week to talk about the 2010 budget.

Det. Ed Wallace, spokesman for the Deputy Sheriff’s Guild, said Monday’s picket is being held to educate the public about proposed budget cuts that would mean the loss of two patrol deputies. The cuts amount to a total loss of 12 percent of the commissioned work force over the past two years, he said.

Last month, the county commissioners asked Sheriff Mark Brown to cut 5 percent of his budget to help the county bridge a $1.2 million budget deficit for 2010. Sheriff deputies Scott Fortin and Robert Mirabal, who both work out of the South Whidbey precinct, are expected to lose their jobs if the cuts are adopted as expected.

The final budget is scheduled for adoption Monday, Dec. 28. County commissioners will meet in a special session at 9 a.m. to review revenue and expenditure estimates with the county budget director. A public hearing on the budget will be held at 2:15 p.m.

The meetings will be held in the commissioners’ hearing room in the County Annex Building, 1 NE Sixth St., Coupeville.

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