New county manager details vision for Dona Ana County
LAS CRUCES, N.M. — Newly hired Dona Ana County Manager Julia Brown spoke about her vision and areas of improvement during a formal introduction meeting Monday afternoon.
Brown brings a wealth of knowledge to her new role with a military background and experience in the public and private sectors in law, financing and managing non-profit organizations among other things.
"I'm extremely excited to have been selected as the county manager," Brown said.
Number one a top the list of priorities is working on the county budget when in fiscal year 2014 the county will be spending $15 million in reserves.
Brown said there's opportunities to increase revenue but will also look into making the county more efficient spending money.
She said they will also look at all available options at reducing costs.
"Her style and her background fits very well with this commission and we're going to see lots of good things for the county," said District 4 Commissioner Wayne Hancock.
Hancock said he was also pleased at Brown's vision for promoting the county and they plan on attracting the movie industry while also exploring various possibilities through Spaceport America.
They will also be looking closely at gross receipts taxes from the Spaceport after potential state legislation could take money away from area school districts, if passed in January.
"The voters voted on a specific thing and we want to make sure it stays that way," Hancock said.
Brown will also focus on boosting morale after an audit earlier in the year found employees felt they could not make complaints within their own departments.
Brown said her goal is to make the county the top employer in the area and it will start with improving trust.
"It will also require us to continue to respect the rights of our employees while at the same time demanding a day's work for a day's pay," she said.
Brown said her first work week was busy getting settled in and said she will be meeting with area stakeholders in the coming days on how to make the county better.