County budget approved for upcoming year

By Amanda McBride

The Choctaw Plaindealer

 

The Choctaw County Board of Supervisors approved the fiscal year 2013-2014 budget in the August 30 board meeting. The fiscal year begins October 1.

The supervisors approved the budget with a motion from District 2 Supervisors Larry McClain and a second from District 1 Supervisor Archie Collins. It was approved in a 4-1 vote with District 5 Supervisor Eric Chambers against it.

Choctaw County has a total budget of $16,794,577.25 for the fiscal year. The total budget has increased approximately $3, 592, 619 from the previous fiscal year.

The projected revenue is $7,670,992.12 with projected expenses of $16,794,577.25

To make up the difference in revenues and expenses the county has approved a tax levy of 79.09 mils. The tax levy is estimated to bring in approximately $9,123,585.13 to the budget. This is an increase of $4,649,701 from last year. The budget increased due to the rate of 1 mil in taxes doubling in one year. This year’s mil rate is $115,357 compared to $56,587 from last year.

The mil rate doubled in one year due to the coal-fired power plant’s 10-year fee in lieu agreement ending.

“The mil rate increased from the coal-fired power plant coming off their 10 year fee in lieu payment. As of January 2013 they will come on the ad valorem tax roll,” said Chris McIntire, board president.

“The true value of that plant was in excess of $40,000 which is the reason for the increase of the mil value,” he continued.

With the construction of the new hospital and medical office building, leasing those two building and the nursing home have added some line item revenues and expenses to the budget.

Revenues include medical office building lease payment $270,194, new hospital lease payment $637,728, nursing home lease payment $432,499 and licensure payment $300,000.

Expenses include hospital bond payment $1,433,750, hospital construction payoff $150,000, indigent care $294,000, generator payment $219,500 and the sinking fund (bonds) $1,277,497.

The county’s largest budget and expenditures is the General Fund. This fund includes office administration, judicial and law enforcement, operations and maintenance of buildings and grounds, support and upkeep of Choctaw County Library, budgets of the Chancery clerk, Circuit Clerk, Tax Assessor/Collector, Sheriff’s Office, remodeling, building or repairing the Courthouse, Jail and other buildings plus more.

The county’s largest budgets in the General Fund include:

Board of Supervisors $907,628 which is a $91,585 decrease from last year. This funds the supervisors’ salaries, expenses, matching for grants and any additional legal fees. McIntire said the decrease came from less expected in legal fees.

District 1 Road Fund $376,626 which funds road hand salaries, barn expenses and funds for the roads and bridges. This total includes revenues of $167,412. Revenues include monies from road and bridge privilege tax, truck tags, gasoline sales tax, land redemption and last year’s taxes. It also includes a portion of additional fee in lieu funds added for paving.

This year’s road fund is an increase of $103,149 from last year.

District 2 Road Fund $400,934 which funds road hand salaries, barn expenses and funds for the roads and bridges. This total includes revenues of $173,864. Revenues include monies from road and bridge privilege tax, truck tags, gasoline sales tax, land redemption and last year’s taxes. It also includes a portion of additional fee in lieu funds added for paving. This includes a $153,965 increase from last year.

District 3 Road Fund $391,616 which funds road hand salaries, barn expenses and funds for the roads and bridges. This total includes revenues of $159,814. Revenues include monies from road and bridge privilege tax, truck tags, gasoline sales tax, land redemption and last year’s taxes. It also includes a portion of additional fee in lieu funds added for paving. This includes a $129,489 increase from last year.

District 4 Road Fund $425,343 which funds road hand salaries, barn expenses and funds for the roads and bridges. This total includes revenues of $173,956. Revenues include monies from road and bridge privilege tax, truck tags, gasoline sales tax, land redemption and last year’s taxes. It also includes a portion of additional fee in lieu funds added for paving. This includes a $162,697 increase from last year.

District 5 Road Fund $281,064 which funds road hand salaries, barn expenses and funds for the roads and bridges. This total includes revenues of $123,480. Revenues include monies from road and bridge privilege tax, truck tags, gasoline sales tax, land redemption and last year’s taxes. It also includes a portion of additional fee in lieu funds added for paving. This includes an $86,324 increase from last year.

Countywide maintenance $51,599 which includes revenues of $6,700 from a portion of fee in lieu funds added for paving.

Chancery Clerk $75,625 which is an $11,846 decrease from last year.

Chancery Court $68,900 which is a $15,160 increase from last year.

Circuit Clerk $71,552 which is a $756 increase from last year.

Circuit Court $77,690 which is a $9,620 increase from last year.

Tax Assessor $259,840 which is a $61,221 increase from last year. Chris McIntire, supervisor board president, said this fund was increased due to the expense of the required digital photography and mapping upgrade and to update the mapping computer software.

Justice Court $196,699 which is a $5,916 increase from last year.

Maintenance of Buildings $38,765 which is a $5,145 increase from last year.

County Attorney $56,158 which is a $58 increase from last year.

Public Attorney $55,778 which is a $178 increase from last year.

Elections $52,580 which is a $13,970 decrease from last year.

Sheriff Department $740,497 which is a $69,472 increase from last year. McIntire explained that this budget was increased because the Sheriff’s Department budget was cut $120,000 the year before. He said it was also increased to purchase a patrol car and training.

Custody of Prisoners $135,180 which is a $4,520 increase from last year.

Fire Departments $40,089 which includes the fire coordinator’s salary and any additional legal expenses relating to volunteer fire. This includes a $214 increase from last year.

Volunteer Fire $147,554. This fund includes annual payments to each volunteer fire department and any other expenses.

Library $51,860 which is a $1,640 decrease from last year.

County Extension $29,648 which is a $1,448 increase from last year.

Golden Triangle Planning and Development total $32,000, which includes budgets for the Council on Aging and the GTPDD. The GTPDD budget is $12,500. The Council of Aging budget is $19,500, which includes $4,500 in revenue.

E911 $280,275 which is a $40,000 increase from last year. According to McIntire, the increase was due to full debt service for new 911 software, employee overhead, employee training and because it was cut by 25 percent the previous year.

Waste Services and Landfill $500,000 which is the same as last year.

Emergency Services $394,980, which funds the ambulance service, is the same as last year.

Emergency Management $63,957.