County to operate on

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 27, 2000

$11.4 million budget in 2000-01


Staff Writer

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Pike County will operate on a $11.6 million budget during the next fiscal year, a 2.84 percent reduction from this past year.

After several budget meetings, the Pike County Commission approved the 2000-2001 budget Monday night with a 5-1 vote.

"I disagreed with a line item," Commissioner Karen Berry of her lone dissenting vote on passage of the budget. She did not elaborate on what that line item was.

A big chunk of the more than $2.9 million in expenditures will be going to the Pike County Sheriff’s Department, which will be getting more than $1.6 million.

Sheriff Russell Thomas was "pleased" with what the commission designated for his department’s operations.

"The commission was very considerate in approving the budget," Thomas said.

"In the type work we do, you can always use more…but, the commission is doing an outstanding job supporting law enforcement and this department."

He said the commission’s action shows they realize "it takes dollars to make it run."

Part of the money in Thomas’ budget finances the 12th Judicial Drug Task Force, the county jail and funding for juvenile probation.

Of those, juvenile probation has become the most expensive for the county.

Since last year, the county has had to add $44,150 to the amount it paid out last year. County Administrator Steve Hicks pointed out that increased amount is still with the state taking over payment of juvenile probation salaries.

The second largest amount budgeted ­ $416,346 ­ will go to the county commission; $292,587 to the Probate Judge’s Office and $234,159 to the Revenue Commission Office.

Monday night, the commission also:

· Unveiled the anti-litter signs that will be put up all over the county. Each of the six commissioners have 15 signs for their districts. Commissioner Larry Penn expressed appreciation to State Sen. Wendell Mitchell, D-Luverne, for helping to finance the signs.

· Awarded bids for equipment and services used by the Road Department.

· Voted to give County Attorney Allen Jones and Hicks the authority to enter into a lease agreement with the Pike County Board of Education for the Shellhorn School property to be used as a training facility for the sheriff’s department.

· Appointed Dianne Smith and re-appointed Gail Green to the Department of Human Resources Board and Beth Lakey to the East Central Mental Health Board.

· Will meet again on Oct. 23. What would be the commission’s next meeting falls on the Columbus Day holiday.