Chairman Sanford stated
“at this point and time if we consider all the factors and annualize it out we would be about 8 to 9% short.”
After months of trying to work out a budget that would allow the County to pay its bills through these tough economic times you would think more than two departments would be represented at the last budget workshop.
The BOC’s budget workshop was held on May 12, 2011. This was to discuss the budget through April 2011.
Chairman Commissioner JC Sanford said, “The overall expenditure side we are in good shape, it’s the income side where we are really coming up short”.
This is true according to 2011 amended budget. The expenditures are in line but as the County’s Financial Officer Faye Harvey reported, annualized out, the short fall will be around 282,000 at this point in the year.
Chairman Sanford stated “at this point and time if we consider all the factors and annualize it out we would be about 8 to 9% short.”
After looking around the room, Commissioner Danny Hall seemed to be upset to only see two department heads in attendance. He wanted to know why all the departments were not there to discuss the budget.
Commissioner Hall told the BOC, “that’s why we are here right now, we want to make sure we keep this from happening again this year. We will stay on top of it. I really hate it that there’s not more department heads here. They should be at these meetings as much as we are in these meetings, because they’re responsible for their departments.”
Commissioner Hall is referring to last year when the BOC Chairman’s over projected revenues (that when realistically adjusted) had Gilmer County starting 2011 with a 1.5 million dollar shortfall.
Chairman Sanford told the other Commissioners to stop by his office and look at the stack of bills he has questions about that need to be paid. Listening to the frustration of trying to discuss the budget without involving the department reps and elected officials,
County Attorney David Clark made a suggestion, “I will say this, I know you are examining the budget here, you’re frustrated you don’t have the department heads here in front of you or the elected officials, depending on which category you’re looking at; years ago this was done in a regular meeting. And those officials had to come into the meeting and discuss it. It put them back in the limelight of having to ;( i.e.) one-why this expenditure is out of control. It used to be done on a monthly basis.”
Commissioner Hall responded by saying this would keep them accountable. Chairman Sanford didn’t think they could wait until the end of the year.
Commissioner Beattie replied “let’s try to take David’s recommendation.”
The two larger budgets, Fire & Rescue and the Sheriff’s department, are over the amended budget amount at this time. Chairman Sanford explained that it would take some adjustment time for these departments to meet the amended budget
. Commissioner Danny Hall replied, “I want you all to realize, I don’t expect this to turn around overnight, but I would like us to keep a tight rein on it. It’s plain and simple.”
The commissioners ended the budget workshop by agreeing that anyone with a budget would be required to attend the July mid term budget meeting.
Watch the video below for the full budget workshop discussion and find out what is being discussed concerning your property tax bill.
FYN asks commissioners questions about the budget.