Columbia County Commission passes $190 million budget

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The Columbia County Commission unanimously approved the county government’s $190 million budget for the 2014-2015 fiscal year at Tuesday’s meeting.

Commission Chairman Ron Cross said the balanced budget was hammered out over several weeks of trimming requests from department heads to a manageable number that did not require a property tax increase.

“It is easy to balance a budget when you keep raising taxes, but it isn’t so easy when you don’t,” he said.

Commissioners Ron Thigpen and Bill Morris praised the county staff’s “cooperative spirit” in making adjustments to their “wish lists” to reach a balanced budget.

Even so, the $61 million general fund represents a 6 percent increase over last year’s budget, said County Administrator Scott Johnson.
Johnson said most of that increase came from the county adding 23 positions to the staff over the past year. The budget also includes a $1.6 million contingency fund as a cushion for unexpected expenditures and emergencies, such as the recent ice storm that officials expect to absorb about $500,000 from the current budget, after reimbursements from state and federal authorities are taken into account.

Johnson said the county budgeted an expected 2 percent increase in the tax digest to pay for additional expenditures in the new budget.

The budget adoption passed 3-0, with Commis­sioner Trey Allen absent from the meeting.

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Discussionstarter
501
Points
Discussionstarter 06/04/14 - 08:10 am
1
0
Watch out

The Tax Assessors office will work harder to fnd reasons to raise your property value.

Lee Benedict
1651
Points
Lee Benedict 06/04/14 - 09:31 pm
1
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It would have been simpler if...

the Commission DID NOT vote to fork over its deposits to Georgia Bank & Trust; the HIGHEST (which in this case meant the lowest guaranteed interest rate) bidder. Ron Cross has GB&T stock and Ron Thigpen is GB&T president. By the way, Thigpen received a very nice bonus as a result, and, Columbia County residents have lost a good million bucks (and counting) in interest LOST by not doing business with another bidder who bid more... .25% more. By the way, if you crunch the numbers, GB&T has not even given the .75% it agreed to return in its bid. Thank you Columbia County Commission...at least some of you benefitted from this little "deal" you thought no one would learn of.

Discussionstarter
501
Points
Discussionstarter 06/04/14 - 10:39 am
1
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Thank You Lee

Thank you for sharing that information. Who is to blame; the voters re-elected him!!!! Where is the accountability for deals such as this? Who is watching out for us hard-working tax-paying citizens?

AFjoe
5506
Points
AFjoe 06/04/14 - 11:06 am
0
0
Easy button

With all the people moving into CC, which inturn means extra $$ coming into the cash registers. Spend it wisely...
If we could just get the school board to follow their lead.

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