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County considers million dollar budget cut, two mil reduction

Pike County’s proposed budget may decrease by more than a million dollars for the upcoming 2020-2021 fiscal year which starts July 1. The overall proposed budget would be $1.4 million less than last year’s budget and according to the interim county manager, Brandon Rogers, and would likely result in a millage rate reduction of just over two points. The budget was discussed during a public hearing and budget overview on June 23. Rogers was appointed to the job only two days after the June 10 meeting in which the county budget was proposed and former county manager Ron Alexander resigned. ’We have been going through the budget line by line and changes have been made, but they are not yet ready to present to the board,’ he said. The budget was voted on by commissioners at their Tuesday, June 30 meeting at 6:30 p.m. at the main courtroom of the Pike County courthouse. The county’s current millage rate is 14.262 and the proposed budget would result in a millage rate of 12.11. During the June 23 public hearing, Nancy Boren addressed commissioners and asked about how last year’s budget compares to this year’s budget. Rogers said the overall budget was $15,012,838 million last year and this year’s proposed overall budget was $13,601,047. She said when she appealed her tax assessment notice that there was a long line of others appealing their notices and she asked how the county can anticipate the income before all the appeals are handled. County attorney Rob Morton said the budget has to be set by the county prior to the adoption of the millage rate since the fiscal year starts July 1. Morton noted that the county has to make projections during the budget process and that adjustments can be made to the budget after the final millage rate is set. ’The millage rate will not be set until the threshold is met where the digest is going to be certified by the state,’ said Morton. ‘It can be submitted for certification at a certain threshold but until that happens, we use the best information possible to make a reasonable anticipation of what it may be to adopt the budget prior to the fiscal year starting.’ Commissioner Tim Daniel noted that budget amendment resolutions are done at meetings throughout the year as needed. After being contacted by the Pike County Journal Reporter, interim county manager Brandon Rogers said the proposed budget for the 2020-21 fiscal year has decreased to $13,517,368 since the public hearing was held.

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