Eckhart said that the use of interns is another method in keeping staffing costs down.

"We squeeze as much as we can get. That's what priority-based budgeting will do," he said.

Eckhart lamented the fact that the lack of manpower in his office doesn't allow more performance-based audits throughout the year.

"We're struggling. We can't do it with the manpower we have," he said.

But, commissioner Scott Ott wondered aloud why the board doesn't hear from Eckhart on a more regular basis.

"Are you communicating with the board enough? Will we only see you if your hair is on fire? Will we know if something is wrong? You're like the bad guy looming in the background," Ott said.

"I sent plenty of e-mail communications to the board," Eckhart said.

In other business, commissioners heard a first reading of an ordinance which would change the name of Lehigh County Prison to Lehigh County Jail.

"This properly identifies the jail as place that properly defines the length of the stays of our guests," said commissioner David Jones.

The proposed bill will also eliminate confusion regarding the type of correctional facility when the county applies for grants.

In a related matter, commissioners voted to enter into a professional services agreement with Justice Benefits, Inc. of Dallas, Texas to administer a federal program that will reimburse the county up to $85,000 per year in costs associated with housing undocumented inmates.