Fulton County Commissioners Hold Fall Budget Hearings

BUDGET HEARINGS … Crystal Bennett from the Fulton County Veterans Services is seen here giving a Budget update to the Commissioners at the November 2, 2021 meeting. A budget hearing was also held that day with Jackie Savage from the SWCD Department, and one with Beth Fires, Director of the Board of Developmental Disabilities was held on Thursday, October 28, 2021. These Budget Hearings keep the commissioners alert to the finances of each department. (PHOTO BY REBECCA MILLER, STAFF)

By: Rebecca Miller

Beth Friess, Director of the Board of Developmental Disabilities for Fulton County was present at the October 28, 2021 meeting of the Fulton County Commissioners for a Budget Hearing.

She reported that there are going to be some changes to the salary line of the budget as the salaries increased, they have hired an additional person, they have a person retiring and another one moving from part time to full time. The biggest difference in the budget is the waiver costs for individuals who are on Medicaid Waivers.

Friess explained that Medicaid pays a portion of the costs and the Board of DD pays a portion of it, adding that they have a Medicaid reserve fund carryover. She also mentioned the levy that will need to be renewed next year.

In regular business, the Commissioners approved the minutes from October 26, 2021, the agenda, the Increase and Transfer of Appropriations for various departments and Purchase and Travel orders.

Council reviewed the FC Dog Warden Reports for the weeks of October 16 and 23, 2021 as well as the September 2021 Unemployment Rate Report. They then voted to approve:

-Resolution 775 Approve Draw#3 for CDBG Grant B-D020-1AZ-4 Sr. Center Blast Chiller Freezer
-Resolution 776 Approve Contract 2021-105 with Criminal Justice Coordinating Council on behalf of Fulton County Sheriff for NORIS software
-Resolution 777 Approve Contract 2021-106 with Delta United Methodist Church on behalf of the FC Senior Citizens Satellite Center
-Resolution 778 Enter into Contract 2021-107 with Lucas County Coroner for 2022 Autopsy and Toxicology Services
-Resolution 779 Approve Agreement 2021-108 with ODOT for LPA Federal Local-LET Project on behalf of FC Engineer

During the Tuesday, November 2, 2021 sessions, the Commissioners heard from Jackie Savage for the SWCD Department Budget Hearing and Crystal Bennett for the Veterans Services Department Budget Hearing.

Savage updated the commissioners on the Storage Building at the airport. She said that since May they have been able to determine that they need an increase in the Rent line by $24,000, as well as in the Grants line by $24,000 to cover that rent.

She also mentioned the Vehicle Expense account as they are requesting to replace the 2014 van. “In the past our vehicles have been able to be used in other county departments so we are letting you know in case you have a department that would be able to use it,” she told them.

They also have included $18,000 for a Brillion seeder in the equipment expense account. Commissioner Joe Short asked how the storage facility at the airport is going and Savage responded that Pete Carr said it is good and they have 2/3 of their equipment in there with plenty of room.

He is also planning to ask in the future for a stone path to get to the back side of the building. Jon Rupp said they will look into it.

Following a recess, Crystal Bennett addressed the commissioners for the Veterans Services. Fulton County Veterans Services assisted over 157 veterans in the county as well as transported 361 veterans too and from VA Medical appointments.

The office brought in $63 federal dollars for every $1 spent of their budget in 2020, even with a decreased population of veterans in the county. Currently the office estimates a return of approximately $250,000 from the 2021 budget back to the general fund, “which is reflective of the reduction in person training and outreach opportunities due to the pandemic.”

In regular business, the commissioners discussed 2022 Salary Increases, stating that they will give a 3% raise and a bonus of $300 for full time and part time Regular employees, and $150 for part time intermittent staff.

They determined that the bonuses should be given to employees by Thanksgiving, and it can be on the November 26 paychecks.

They voted to approve Resolution 798 Approval of Year 2022 Salary Lines: “a 3% salary line item appropriations increase for Employee’s Salary, for distribution by each elected official and or department head as he or she may see appropriate for calendar year 2022 and; for distribution by each elected official and or department head as he or she may see appropriate for calendar year 2021 in one time money the amount not to exceed $300 for full-time and part-time Regular staff, and $150 for part time intermittent staff.”

They also reviewed the Month End Financial Report and the October Sales Tax report.

Also approved, were:

-Minutes from October 18, 2021; agenda as amended, with additional resolution from Jeff Rupp; payment of bills; Increase and Transfer of appropriations; and Purchase orders and Travel requests
-Resolution 785 Authorize Board President to Execute PY21 CDBG Program Project Request for Release of Funds and Certification – Nature Fresh Farms
-Resolution 786 Accept Recommendation from Loss Control coordinator for Worker’s Comp claim
-Resolution 787 Dispose of un-needed, obsolete or unfit personal property for FC Engineer
-Resolution 788 Approve Contract 2021-109 with Piney Bowes for Postage Meter on behalf of Eastern District Court
-Resolution 789 Approve Contract 2021-110 with Pitney Bowes for Postage Meter on behalf of Prosecutor’s Office
-Resolution 790 Enter into Contract 2021-111 with PMBA Architects for new Senior Center Working Drawings
-Resolution 791 Enter into Contract 2021-112 with Amboy Township for EMS Services
-Resolution 792 Enter into Contract 2021-113 with City of Morenci for EMS Services
-Resolution 793 Enter into Contract 2021-113 with Providence Township for EMS Services
-Resolution 794 Approve Depository Agreement 2021-115 through 2021-119 on behalf of County Treasurer
-Resolution 795 Approve Pay request #2 to Gerken Paving for 2021 Asphalt Resurfacing Project on behalf of FC Engineer
-Resolutions 796 & 797 Approve Personnel Requests on behalf of Senior Center
-Resolution 800 Direct Administrator and EMS Coordinator to Conduct a Feasibility Study for EMS Services in Gotham Township

Rebecca can be reached at rebecca@thevillagereporter.com

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