The Pulaski County Board of Supervisors last Monday night (June 28) approved the county’s fiscal year 2022 budget totaling $141,653.
The board approved the budget on a 3-1 vote with Robinson District Supervisor Charles Bopp casting the lone “no” vote. Supervisors Chairman Joe Guthrie (Cloyd), Laura Walters (Ingles) and Dirk Compton (Draper) all voted “yes.” Massie Supervisor John Travis was absent.
County Administrator Jonathan Sweet said the theme of the budget that took effect Thursday was “To Safeguard a Prosperous Future.”
Sweet said the budget mission was to: “To employ leadership and foresight in developing a balanced budget with an effort to protect and maintain a healthy Fund Balance, to effectively plan for prioritized capital projects, to complete and improve upon existing county assets, to continue to comprehensively support public education and to strategically invest in economic and community development as a way to enhance the quality of life, achieve the target of 40-by-30 (40,000 population by 2030) and safeguard a prosperous future, all with the least impact to the tax payers of Pulaski County.”
Sweet mentioned several accomplishments of the new budget, including:
- Allowances for all of the state’s unfunded mandates
- The necessary funding for teacher raises and increases to teachers’ their health insurance benefits
- Funding for four new school buses
- Funding support for many of our community non-profit organization serving the citizens of Pulaski County
- Additional improvements and upgrades to our many outdoor community and public recreation assets
- Improvements to County owned public buildings, such as needed roof repairs for the historic stone courthouse and the HVAC replacement for the brick courthouse
- Funding to support our first responders, needed fire department equipment, a new ambulance and communications upgrades
- A COLA and Compression adjustment for County employees
- Maintained Community Impact Grant Capacity to reinvest in the community
- The paying off of all remaining county debt (this does not include school board debt service)
- The shoring up and stabilization of the Capital Reserve Fund
- And the holding of the County’s overall increases in operational expenditures to less than 2% and under the projected rate of inflation. In fact, our overall county operational expenses are budgeted to only increase by .5%.
He said Monday’s budget discussion represented the eighth public meeting regarding the budget proposal.
The budget includes general fund revenues and expenditures of $54,558,755, and total revenues for all funds (local, state and federal) of $141,653,802 and expenditures totaling the same amount for a balanced budget.
“I want to thank each member of the Board of Supervisors for their significant amount of time and commitment to the budget process and for your leadership and direction to ensure that stewardship was a top priority. It is because of your guidance that we were able to achieve all of our 24 targeted budget goals and objectives that were established on March 1, 2021 at our initial budget work session, and successfully incorporate them throughout the budget.
“I also want to thank our county team for the roles so many of them played to get us to this point tonight, and particularly to our Finance Department and the County Administration Team for the countless hours and tremendous effort that they put forth to solve a whole year’s worth of challenges and capitalize on a year’s worth of opportunities,” Sweet said.