Budget cuts official for United Way

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 23, 2004

Though budget cuts for the United Way have been expected for sometime, Wednesday afternoon, they became official.

The Selma-Dallas County United Way Delegates Assemby announced that 16 United Way agencies will receive an average 10 percent cut in this year’s allocations.

The Assembly, which consists of representatives of the agencies served and the United way board, met and approved amounts for each agency on a case by case basis. The cuts had been worked out in advance.

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The total, according to Jeff Cothran, executive director of the United Way, is $299,800, just short of the $300,000 that he had predicted earlier because of reduced pledges.

This year’s pledges turned out to be about $450,000, compared with $480,000 the year before.

Pledges had been about $500,000 per year for several years before that, according to Cothran.

Cothran noted the increasingly difficult environment for fund-raising, especially in this area, due to economic contraction and business closings.

Ann increasing percentage of pledges is leaving the Selma-Dallas County area, many going to Montgomery agencies, Cothran said.

This year $31,000 is pledged to agencies outside of Dallas County by people who work in Selma but live outside the county.

Selma-Dallas County United Way allows such designations, while some other counties, notably Montgomery, do not.

Also, this year United Way is budgeting $45,000 in pledges that will not be paid.