Fiscal Court passes first reading of 2022-23 budget

Published 7:00 am Friday, June 10, 2022

The Boyle County Fiscal Court passed the first reading of the 2022-23 budget at their meeting on May 31. The budget totals $65,363,080.

“The budget includes a considerable amount of grant funding,” Boyle County Judge Executive Howard P. Hunt, III said in a press release. “The county has some significant needs which must be addressed this year; and, this budget allows for that.”

After general discussion on grants, funds, and other budget related material, County Treasurer Darlene Lanham came to the podium to give an overview on the first reading of the budget.

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Lanham brought up the transfer of $1.5 million from the ARPA fund to the general fund. The reason for the transfer was because of miscellaneous revenue loss.

“The money from this fund will be split between the fire station project, courthouse financial software updating, and the Perryville water project,” Lanham said in the meeting.

After this money is distributed, Boyle County will not see its next fund available until August, when the projected fund is to be $2.9 million in total. Once that fund is received and divided out, the sum of the fund received by the county will be around $5.82 million, Magistrate Tom Ellis said.

Some of the upcoming projects in the budget include:

• $500,000 toward the relocation of EMS, Environmental Services and Public Works.

• Begin the planning and design of an expanded Detention Center.

• $1.8 million of grant funds to replace the Buster Pike bridge.

• $5 million anticipated Broadband Grant to take service to Forkland.

• $2.9 million anticipated 2022 ARPA Grant Funds for water/sewer projects in Perryville and Junction City; $1.175 million remaining in the 2021 ARPA allocation to fund Parksville water upgrades.

• $1.02 million to purchase two new ambulances.

• $106,600 to outfit a fleet management department, including a diesel mechanic to cut down on costs and time lost while county vehicles are out for maintenance.

• $25 million debt service budgeted as mandated by the Department for Local Government.

Once this was discussed and approved, Hunt asked Lanham to speak on the larger-than-normal budget this year to ease the concerns of county residents. The budget currently is $64 million; which is inflated from last year’s $55 million budget.

“I know it is alarming to people; however, the budget isn’t all that different from what it usually is,” Lanham said. “It seems high because the clerk’s and sheriff’s salaries were added in, but that will come out of our direct deposit and pass through as extra money is funneling through.”

The general consensus of those in attendance is that the budget is in good condition. Part of what makes up the $64 million is $25 million in bond funds, $5 million in grants, and $3 million in ARPA funding.

Lanham closed the forum by telling members of the court that the reserves are in good shape, since the county has taken very little from it.

Now that the Fiscal Court has adopted the budget via first reading, it must be sent to the Department for Local Government for review.  Adoption of the final budget must happen no later than July 1, 2022, and once adopted, a copy will be posted at the entrance of the courthouse for public inspection.

Road resurfacing

The court discussed the allocation of flex funds. Public Works Director Duane Campbell proposed to the court the resurfacing of 0.75 miles of Alum Springs Cross Pike, 0.8 miles of Nosko road, and 0.1 miles of Cox Street outside Perryville.

Although there was some debate over just resurfacing all of Nosko Road, the court approved the funding for three roads and thought it’d be in residents’ best interest to fix parts of all roads.

“Three is better than one and we want to spread the wealth to help make our roads safer for everyone,” Hunt said.

The court also considered the open Community Outreach position.

Emergency Medical Services Director Mike Rogers opened the discussion with good news about the Healing Communities funding of the position for six months. This gives the court more time to find a candidate and alternative revenue sources to continue funding the position after six months.

Rogers said the purpose of the discussion was only to inform the court, so no approvals or decisions were made.

In other business, the court:

• Approved a change in health care provider to Ephraim McDowell. Hunt said the move to the local provider will reinvest Boyle County residents’ tax dollars.

• Reappointed Daniel Sims to the fire protection board.

• Grant for Hazard Household waste event renewed and approved by the court.

• $200,000 dollar recycling grant received and approved.

• Tax settlement and overpayment refund on schools given back.

• Has a candidate in mind for Community Outreach position

Fiscal Court will reconvene on Tuesday, June 14 at 9 a.m.