BREATHITT COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Breathitt County Sheriff John Hollan said he was forced to lay off his entire staff Thursday.
All office personnel, deputies and court security officers are relieved of their duties as of 4:00 p.m., February 13.
"I have exhausted all resources and unfortunately, the department can no longer pay employees or provide fuel for department vehicles until this is resolved," Sheriff Hollan said in a news release.
Hollan said he will not close the office. Instead, he will personally man the office whenever he can and said he will be "available 24 hours a day to serve the people."
The sheriff said he had no choice because the department's budget for 2020 was not approved by January 15. He blames Breathitt County Judge Executive Jeff Noble for "not acting in a timely manner" and for failing "to schedule a meeting to address the departments' budget."
WYMT talked to the judge executive's office, who told us that there is a budget meeting scheduled for Monday to resolve the issue. You can read the Breathitt County Fiscal Court's meeting agenda at the bottom of this article. The sheriff's department said they are aware of the upcoming meeting but said the budget should have been approved before the Jan. 15 deadline.
All vehicles belonging to the sheriff's department will be parked at the courthouse until further notices. Sheriff Hollan said he hopes to have this issue resolved quickly, but in the meantime he asked state and local agencies to help.
In case of an emergency, you can call Hollan at 606-272-2540, 606-666-2424 or 911.