Supervisors Agree To Merge Two County Departments

Supervisors have agreed to merge two county departments into a single division of economic and workforce development.

Kern County Board of Trade executive director Teresa Hitchcock told supervisors Tuesday that she supports the combination of her agency and the Employers’ Training Resource.

“It’ll create a single point-of-access for the county related to economic development, so we can eliminate redundant efforts, capitalize on opportunities and increase marketing and outreach to better-position our county,” she said.

Hitchcock would serve as the director of the new agency.

Judy Hyatt told supervisors Tuesday prior to the vote that she represented the Kern River Valley. She told the board that the county failed to be transparent about its intentions, and that the new organization would not be effective.

“Employers’ Training Resource is a great resource for those looking for work or training opportunities, but it means nothing to the traveling public,” she said.

The move should save the county around $160,000 each year.

– Anthony Pollreisz