FISCAL MATTERS: Budget Committee Meets Tonight

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The Budget Committee of the Cannon County Commission is scheduled to meet tonight at 6 at the Cannon County Courthouse.

The Committee had on its agenda reviewing the proposed budget for the 2012-2013 Fiscal Year.

Departments set to have their budget requests reviewed tonight are the County Executive's Office, Buildings, Register of Deeds, Property Assessor, Trustee, County Court Clerk and the Ambulance Service.

The county is projected to end the current fiscal year’s budget with a spending deficit of approximately $450,000. The General Fund ended the last fiscal year (2010-2011) with a deficit of $48,935.

The projected deficit for FY2012-2013 is $701,468. The projected fund balance at the end of the next fiscal year, if the county commission approves the projected budget as it now stands, would be $201.270.

Because of an anticipated loss in revenue, partially state and federal grants, the General Fund is projected to have $746,421 less money to spend next year than it did this year.

Even with a 12-cents increase in the property tax, the commission overspent by almost a half million dollars this fiscal year. It had to use reserve money to make up the difference. At its current and proposed rate of spending, the reserve funds will have evaporated by the end of FY2012-2013 and the county will be in the red $508,198.

A property tax increase of 35 cents would have funded the current year’s budget without taking money from the reserve fund. During budget negotiations last year the Budget Committee considered a property tax increase as high as 25 cents before finally deciding on 20 cents. The full commission whittled that down to first 15 and then 12 cents. The current property tax rate is $2.44 per $100 of assessed property.

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