Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry’s decision to put appearances before public safety this year has sparked many questions. In his proposed budget, Huckelberry recommended increasing funding for public relations while rejecting increases for the Sheriff’s Department.
|Number of Current Employees||7||20|
|Communications Office Revised Budget-Compensation Only||$881,776||$1,874,594|
|Number of Positions Covered by the Budget||9||20|
|Compensation Revised (New)||$997,285||$2,052,081|
Pima County is the second most populated county in Arizona. Maricopa County is the most populated county in Arizona. Not only is Maricopa County larger, it is richer, and it appears to be more frugal.
With nearly four times the population, Maricopa County spends less than half of what Pima County spends on its Communications Department.
Maricopa County’s Communications Department currently has 9 employees, Pima County has 20.
It is not just a difference in public relations staff numbers. Maricopa County, with a population of nearly 4 million people, has approximately 14,000 employees. Pima County on the other hand, with a population of under 1 million, has nearly 7,000 employees.
The stated mission of the Pima County Communications Department is “to enhance the County’s visibility, image and reputation throughout Arizona, the United States and internationally.” However, due to the priorities of Huckelberry and a majority of the Board of Supervisors, the County has struggled with a poor reputation.