Idaho Democrats hope to smooth out the boom-and-bust staffing cycle that follows the election calendar, the party's executive director, Sally Boynton Brown, said Monday.
The party has typically had five employees during election years, shrinking to two in off years, Brown said.
"My goal is to have four staff, year-round," Brown said.
Brown said she's hoping to raise the necessary money by Feb. 23, the party's big annual fundraiser, the Frank and Bethine Church Gala and Auction.
Two employees were laid off Jan. 1, field director Matt Greene and compliance director Jill Ellsworth. That leaves Brown, communications director Dean Ferguson and development director Marie Hattaway.
The layoffs prompted a reader to contact me, saying money from the Democratic National Committee had been pulled because the national Democrats have written off Idaho.
Brown said that wasn't the case. The DNC funds one position year-round with "state partnership" money and will continue to do so, she said. Additional support comes in election years.
Brown, who was hired two years ago, also said she hopes to reduce high turnover, which forces the party to regularly replace modestly paid employees.
"We really are working on making sure we maintain staff by paying a living wage," Brown said. "If we want to keep people around for three or four years, we can't keep paying them what we have been."