Health District layoffs force office hour closing during lunch hour.
If you have questions or concerns and want to talk with health workers at the Benton Franklin Health District you no longer can during the lunch hour.
The Health District has run out of funding and ten percent of workers have been laid off. The Child Care program is gone along with some of the support staff who take calls during the day. Workers say they lost a dedicated funding source when the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax was cut down 10 years ago. It's been a steady decline since then leaving most of the federal financial backing to Illness Prevention. We talked with one doctor who's worked here since the 80's and he says it's the first time he's seen any layoffs.
"Because of the layoffs we just can't give the same services. We've tried everything and it's come down to now we have to be closed over the noon hour," Dr. Larry Jecha said.