County commission passes $12 million budget
The Franklin County Commission passed a $12 million operating budget during a special called meeting Monday afternoon.
The commissioners approved the fiscal 2014 budget totaling $12,274,256, which was a slight increase over the 2013 budget, related mostly to funding for the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program, or ATRIP.
Last year’s budget was $11.9 million. The FY14 budget went into effect Tuesday.
This year’s budget includes a one-time lump sum pay adjustment to all county employees in lieu of pay raises. Employees of the county prior to Oct. 1, 2012, will receive a payment of $900 per employee. Employees hired after Oct. 1, 2012, will receive the bonus on a pro-rated basis. The budget also includes any step raises due in fiscal 2014.
The budget is divided as follows: the general fund is allocated $6,672,678.20, the solid waste department is allocated $2,487,278.55 and the highway department was budgeted for $3,114,300.13.
A five percent increase in health insurance premiums and an 8.75 percent increase in life insurance premiums were absorbed into the 2014 budget.
The difference needed to balance this year’s budget will come from transfers from the capital improvements fund, public buildings fund, public highway and traffic fund and fund balance brought forward from the last fiscal year, according to the commission.
The largest difference in the newly passed budget and the fiscal year 2013 budget is related to funding for the ATRIP projects.
ATRIP funding requires a 20 percent local match. It provides funding for road resurfacing and bridge projects.
Franklin County was awarded $11.2 million in ATRIP funding. The county borrowed $2.2 million to match the entire project. The match for this year’s portion of the project is $450,000.
“I appreciate all the work from the department heads on this year’s budget,” Probate Judge Barry Moore said. “A lot of work by a lot of people goes into making a budget, but even more work goes into living within the budget. It’s just like our previous budget, it’s very tight, but I think all of our department heads will continue to work to stay within their budget.”