The balanced budget includes $39,684,139 in the General Fund, which comes from property taxes, plus another $46,325,303 from 18 funding other sources which each are limited by specific expenses including the 2005 and 2008 special purpose local option sales taxes, grant funds, the fire district tax, impact fees, court fees and confiscated assets.
The budget is a 6.17 percent increase from the current budget of $82,609,262, but includes no property tax increase, no reduction in force (layoffs), no furlough days, and continues longevity payments for employees and provides incentives for employees who develop budget cost cutting measures and includes no increase in insurance costs for employees.
The $39,684,139 General Fund budget includes most county operations including courts, the commissioners, Sheriff’s Office, Parks and Recreation, and Public Works. The largest line items in the General Fund are the Jail ($7,421,850), Correctional Institution ($6,292,010), Sheriff’s Office Uniform Patrol Division ($3,167,617), Public Works ($3,070,255), General Appropriations ($2,438,196), Parks ($1,793,408), and Sheriff Administration ($1,093,251).
The largest items, more than $1 million, in the rest of the budget and covered with revenue from outside the General Fund include Capital Projects 2008 SPLOST ($20,147,771), Water System Fund ($9,251,952), Fire District Fund, which covers Fire Department operations ($5,810,105), 2008 SPLOST Debt Service ($3,499,875), Capital Improvements 2005 SPLOST which covers the remaining costs of the new senior center ($3,201,250), Impact Fee Fund ($1,533,212) and Emergency Telephone System ($1,409,822).
The Board of Commissioners approved the first reading of the budget June 18 and the final version, June 28, both by unanimous votes.