County Budget Time: planning begins

By 
Eleanor Guerrero
CCN Senior Reporter
Thursday, June 13, 2019
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Photo by Eleanor Guerrero
(Left to right) Commissioners Pitts DeArmond, Scott Blain and Bill Bullock and Justice of the Peace Kevin Nichols. The Carbon County Commissioners are reviewing county department budgets at this time including their own.

On Monday, June 10, the Carbon County Commissioners continued their budget reviews looking at their own department’s general fund. 

Last year, the Commissioners received respectively in wages alone: $68,200 Commissioner Pitts DeArmond, Dist. 1; $68,500 Commissioner Scott Blain, Dist. 2; $68,800 Commissioner Bill Bullock, Dist. 3

These wages will be increased 1.5 percent this year for 2019-2020. 

The total wages plus benefits designated last year per Commissioner was: $88,199.42 Commissioner Pitts DeArmond, Dist. 1; $88,549.85 Commissioner Scott Blain, Dist. 2 ; $88,900.28 Commissioner Bill Bullock, Dist. 3

Besides the 1.5 percent wage increase stated above there will be an increase in benefits of $101 per month ($1212 annually) for insurance premium contributions for 2019-2020.

The Commissioners came aboard after an unusual year for the county, which lost two of its commissioners. Carbon County Administrative Officer Angela Newell explained, “Actual expenditures for 2017-2018 Commissioner salaries were $189,132 (this was with a month gap between Grewell and Blain and a month gap between Tucker and DeArmond). So essentially there were 2 months where only two commissioners were paid in the 17-18 year resulting in the larger $205,500 budget for 2018-2019.” 

Although the budget is not finalized at this point, the Commissioners did make the decision to formally create a Capital Improvement Fund for future work to be done. “In the past,” Newell explained, “there was just money and no plan. This year they are earmarking funds for capital improvements.” While she said they had previously had to re-appropriate money in the account from year to year this time it would be formally moved to a Capital Fund “clearly designated.” There will be funding designated for an asphalt plan, a building plan and an equipment plan. 

As an example, it was discussed, the Sheriff’s office designates funding for “two and one third vehicle.” This way, the money can build each year to have full funding in the third year for another vehicle without requiring the money to be taken all in one year. Also in their intent with these funds, there will be “no chance they get lost” said Commissioner Scott Blain. 

Training was a big and necessary expense said the Commissioners. “We all attended the MAACO meetings,” said Commissioner Blain. District meetings were attended although not  necessarily even one commissioner from every other county attended. It was a learning experience, they explained. They will be attending newly elected officer trainings as they come up so an extra $1000 was added to last year’s travel budget.

There is a conference in Washington, D.C. coming up and Commissioner Bill Bullock explained they would probably end up having one commissioner attend. 

Regarding their own vehicles, each commissioner commented on their tires’ wear and Commissioners Bullock and DeArmond judged they could go a little further but tires were budgeted for Commissioner Blain for next spring. 

 

The Justice of the Peace staff budget was also reviewed. Health insurance is expected to increase for the next year since the office will now cover a fourth clerk who will train for four months while the other is preparing to leave.     

 

 

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The Carbon County News

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