CountyCouncil2016After taking action on three additional appropriation request and 13 transfer requests the Marshall County Council was questioned this week on their policy for within category transfers.

Commissioner Kevin Overmyer reminded the council of their tabled action at last month’s meeting.  When asked what has changed he said, “What changes is when we run out of money for utilities like we did in November.  I filled out the paperwork that transferred money within that same budget category to pay those bills when we approved claims the first Monday in November.  What happens if the transfer comes to the council on the second Monday of the month and you guys deny it? How do we get out money back?  We have to pay the bills!”  Overmyer reiterated state statute which says, “between budget categories you need council approval.”

County Treasure Penny Lukenbill said, “We have always had the latitude within our budget lines to transfer in the same categories.  I think there has been an element of trust between the council and the department heads and elected officials that gave us flexibility in our budgets because we make our budgets 6 to 7 months ahead and we don’t know exactly what that budget is going to be.”   A transfer between training and travel and mileage was allowable and now that would have t be approved, even if it’s only a dollar.

After further discussion a motion was made by Jon VanVactor and seconded by State Harper to have all transfers approved during the monthly council meeting.  The vote was 3 in favor and 4 against so motion died. A second motion was offered by Harper to allow in category transfers under $5,000 to be completed by the Auditor without council approval and those over $5,000 to come before the council in a public meeting.  This motion passed with Harper, VanVactor, Bill Githens and Rex Gilliland voting for it.