- Associated Press - Sunday, July 20, 2014

LUMBERTON, Miss. (AP) - Budget troubles have prompted Lumberton to cut its police force from eight officers to three since October.

Mayor Ben Winston tells the Hattiesburg American (http://hatne.ws/1nL8VNU ) that city will need help to find out just how bad shape its finances are in.

Missing records and shoddy record-keeping have left the city of about 2,000 unable to tell just how much money it has, or doesn’t have. It’s 2013-14 budget is based on 2012-13 estimates of about $1.1 million.

Police Chief Elsie Cowart says the cuts feel personal because no other departments were cut.

Alderman Kent Crider says police expenses had outstripped revenue property tax revenues. He says Lumberton is trying to provide other services and pay its bills on about $15,000 in sales taxes.


Information from: The Hattiesburg American, http://www.hattiesburgamerican.com



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