The Marshall County Council spent more than 7 hours in meetings Monday, September 13th to conduct their regular business meeting and their Budget hearing on the 2022 budgets.
County Auditor Julie Fox told council members the General Fund requests totaled $16,368,964 and the Special Funds came in at $18,102,246. The grand total of requests for 2022 was $34,471,210. The auditor said the conservative estimated revenues for next year in the General Fund are $14,899,125. That means the County Council should cut over $1.4 million from the budget requests in the General Fund.
The council got right to work but fell far short of where they needed to be at the end of the day. In the end, they were only able to whittle down the budget requests in the General Fund by $389,131. While the were able to get through all 99 pages of the 2022 budget, they still need to cut another million dollars and they still need to make their final decisions on the salary increases for next year. The County Council recessed the meeting and will open the meeting again at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, September 29th.
The County Commissioner’s budget was the first one the council looked at. Commissioners Kevin Overmyer and Mike Burroughs offered up a total of $225,000 in cuts, $100,000 from Group Life Insurance, $10,000 from Professional Services, $25,000 in Legal Services, $20,000 in the Telephone Fund, $50,000 from the General Liabilities Fund and $20,000 in Utilities.
Commissioner Overmyer also presented cuts for the Building and Grounds Department. $33,800 was cut including $5,000 from Janitorial Supplies, $20,000 from Repair of Buildings & Structures, $6,000 from Rent of the Garage and $2,800 in Wages Overtime and Longevity due to restructuring for a department head.
In other departments the County Council cut $10,000 from the Cum Bridge Fund, $5,000 from the Sheriff’s Extradition Fund for equipment maintenance and repair.
The County Park and Recreation Department submitted a budget for the first time. Their budget request was $125,000 including $100,000 for the relocation of the historic trustee log cabin, $2,000 for supplies, $1,000 for park signs and a thousand for professional services/education along with $2,000 in each fund for the Trails at Mill Pond, the Memorial Forest and Kayak launches on the Yellow River and $15,000 for contractual services such as grass mowing, trail cleaning and tree trimming. Last week they accepted a quote of $68,000 to dismantle, relocate and reconstruct the historic log cabin. The council cut $30,000 from the log cabin line and $10,000 from the contractual services.
Some council members weren’t key with the selected location of the West School Property and thought the project should be funded by grants and donations. Park Board Secretary Deb VanDeMark told the council they have applied for two separate grants but hasn’t heard about them being awarded yet.
The $97,728 budget of the Marshall County Coroner took a hit. The council cut $200 of the $600 request for vehicle maintenance supplies, $600 from the $2,000 request for fuel, $500 or half of the Travel/Mileage line item, all of the legal advertising budget and all of the repair of furniture and fixtures request for a total cut of $2,100.
Judge Colvin from Superior Court II also saw more than a dozen cuts. The council cut the $5,000 request for the department head, $7,000 for the part-time Law Clerk, $650 out of Office Supplies, $250 from computer programming, $2,500 from travel/mileage and $300 from Grand & Petit Jurors. That initial cut was $15,700. After the judge left the council made additional cuts including $2,000 in Bilingual stipend, $105 from Jury Supplies, $168 out of Jury Meals, $250 out of uniforms, $1,000 in travel/mileage, $500 for printed forms and $500 for office furniture and fixtures. The additional cuts were $4,523.
Judge Sarber in Marshall Superior Court III has $4,500 in the budget next year for new chairs. The council cut $3,000 out and suggested he use the $20,000 still in the budget this year to purchase the additional furnishings.
In Superior Court I the County Council cut the $5,000 department head wage and $2,894 from wages bailiff. Several other departments had cuts but in the end, the County Council only cut about one-third of what they need to cut. They will work on additional cuts at their September 29th m