10:00 PM PST on Tuesday, January 12, 2010

By IMRAN GHORI
The Press-Enterprise

San Bernardino County supervisors approved the merger of the treasurer-tax collector and auditor/controller’s offices Tuesday, citing it as a cost-saving measure at a time when the county needs to tighten its belt.

The move eliminates the treasurer-tax collector as an independently-elected position, bringing those duties under the auditor/controller’s authority. As part of the swap, the auditor/controller will give up the clerk/recorder functions to the assessor’s office as both deal with property records.

And, agreeing to a last-minute request from Sheriff Rod Hoops, the board turned over the duties of public administrator that were handled by the treasurer-tax collector to the sheriff/coroner’s office where it had been before the sheriff and coroner merged in 2005.

The county will see a savings of $500,000 by eliminating redundant positions and possibly another $300,000 to $500,000 through increased efficiency, said Auditor/Controller Larry Walker, who will report back to the board on April 1 on the exact savings.

To read entire story, click here.