Brazos County Health District Board Responds To Proposed Funding Cuts By The County And Cities Of College Station & Bryan

Brazos County health district logo from the Twitter account @BrazosCoHD.
Brazos County health district logo from the Twitter account @BrazosCoHD.

The board of the Brazos County health district is among those responding to the county and the cities of College Station and Bryan calling for a budget proposal of ten percent less money in next years budget.

Health district director Santos Navarrette and the board discussed two scenarios last Friday.

Navarrette says a ten percent cut…as requested by the county and the cities of College Station and Bryan… would result in cutting six positions, reducing operational expenses by $117,000 dollars, and having a budget deficit of more than $147,000 dollars.

No change in next year’s local funding for the health district means a zero budget deficit, but keeps the cut of six positions and reduction in operational expenses. Director Santos Navarette talked about the results of eliminating six positions.

Board vice chairman and College Station city councilman John Nichols said during Friday’s board meeting “We’re in a death spiral basically” and “you’re actually in Never Neverland.”

Navarrette says if their agency does not get the same funding in fiscal year 2021, “then we start down this rabbit hole, (when) the next step is to cut a nurse, cut environmental health. When you cut those two positions, you now lose grants or fees. And when you lose those, now you’re cutting more people. (And) it just snowballs.”

The supervisor of the health district’s clinic operations, community health manager Carol Brown, talked about the impact of not having grant money for immunizations and the work that’s being done during the pandemic.

The health district’s environmental health manager, Bob Lamkin, brought up the number of permits and inspections that are done and the enforcement of the governor’s relaxed executive order allowing limited restaurant dining.

Click below for comments from Santos Navarrette, John Nichols, Carol Brown, and Bob Lamkin.

Listen to “Brazos County health board discusses the impact of less money in next year's budget from the county & the cities of Bryan & College Station” on Spreaker.