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County budget: Legislators talk 5-7 percent   ADVERTISEMENT

County budget: Legislators talk 5-7 percent

YATES COUNTY—The Yates County finance committee addressed the current status of the 2014 budget during their meeting Tuesday, Oct. 8, discussing the possibility of a 5 to 7 percent tax levy increase. However, County Administrator and Budget Officer Sarah Purdy said she would be unable to get the budget down to 7 percent without violating the directive given to her by the legislature on her approach to the management team. She said she would be able to provide the legislature with suggestions, but “fully accepts the fact as a whole the legislature doesn’t want me to be so hard on people anymore.” Purdy said she hopes to have the tentative budget completed and submitted to legislators by Friday, Oct. 18.
Legislator Doug Paddock said Purdy should “do what makes sense” then put together suggestions and have the legislature deal with them during the budget workshops. Purdy also said the date for the public hearing on the 2014 budget has not been set yet. Committee Chairman Tim Dennis said he hopes it would be earlier than December, which is when the 2013 budget public hearing was held last year.
Discussion arose after District 1 legislative candidate Gary Montgomery asked why there was no mention of the budget listed on the meeting’s agenda. Purdy said she was still working on it, and the development schedule for the 2014 budget called for the tentative budget to be issued by Friday, Oct. 18. She said it will be available for review on the county website shortly after it is issued.
Purdy said what she will be issuing is more of a preliminary budget to be reviewed by legislators during their workshop Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 28 and 29. She said after the workshop, the legislature will need to approve a tentative budget which will then go on to a public hearing before final approval.
Purdy said if the county legislature fails to adopt a budget for the next fiscal year by Dec. 20 or if fail to take any action on budget officers submitted budget, then the budget officer’s budget becomes the final budget unless it is over the tax cap and has not been overridden. Purdy added the tax cap stands at 3.36 percent, but was already overridden by the legislature.
In other business:
• The committee approved the addition of a resolution authorizing a state bid purchase of an instock police vehicle at a cost of $26,976 out of the insurance reserve. This comes as a change from a decision made by the public safety committee the day before to use $10,000 out of the contingency fund to help pay for the vehicle.