NAIROBI–Governors have dismissed as unlawful and impractical a proposal by Treasury to cut funding to counties in the next financial year as part of governments austerity measures to meet its financial obligations.

The governors are warning that the law is clear on county allocation vowing to fight the proposed reduction to counties by 18 billion.

Early this week National Treasury Cabinet Secretary informed a Senate committee that the government coffers were running dry and tabled a proposal for county governments to take an 18 billion cut to their allocation as part of austerity measures.

Treasury proposed that the allocation is adjusted downwards from 302 billion shillings to 285 billion shillings.

Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich told senators the government has suffered a revenue shortfall of 84 billion shillings compelling it to cut expenditure.

The proposal attracted condemnation from a section of governors who warn any slash to their budget could ground county operations.

The governors who were attending a Senate retreat in Naivasha, lashed out at the national government calling on ministries to slash non-essential spending to meet their financial obligations.

At the same time, they renewed calls for conclusive discussions on the functions of the Kenya Urban Roads Authority- KURA and The Kenya Rural Roads Authority, KeRRA, to avoid duplication of roles.

Senate speaker who was at the meeting called for a seamless transfer of power in counties including staff employment.

He warned the current trend in which newly elected governors are keen to fire staff on assumption of office was costly in the long term owing to legal suits.

Lusaka said the assumption of office bill at the county level would hopefully cure this and ensure professionals are retained at the county level.