Pike County Commission delays budget approval

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The work session Monday night did not provide all the answers the Pike County commissioners needed to approve the FY 2014-2015 budget.

Commission Chairman Homer Wright called for a recess until next Monday, Sept. 29, when the commissioners will once again have an opportunity to vote on the prepared budget.

Commissioners expressed several concerns, and Wright said more time was needed to get answers to those concerns.

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The commissioners wanted more time to review the proposals for the County’s liability and property insurance.

Sonny Brasfield, executive director, Alabama Association of County Commissioners, presented a proposal for liability insurance while Johnny Witherington of Witherington Insurance Group in Troy made a proposal for both the liability and property insurance.

The commissioners requested more information on the software maintenance contract for the offices of the Pike County Revenue Commission and the Pike County Probate Judge.

S&W Minicomputers, Inc. has had the contract for 12 or more years and requested the renewal of the contract. However, the Probate Judge’s office requested that its contract be given to Ingenuity because its software is more compatible with the needs of the office.

The commissioners also wanted more time to consider request for appropriations for several organizations.

The Meeksville Volunteer Fire Department was the only local volunteer fire department that requested funding from the commission.

Wright said that he could not agree to provide funding for one volunteer fire department.

“I believe in treating them all the same,” he said and suggested that funding for the volunteer fire departments come from the commissioner’s discretionary funds.

An earlier motion that each commissioner’s discretionary fund be increased from $4,600 annually to $6,000 was tabled.

Appropriations requested by local entities are awarded from the $150,000 sales tax appropriation. Any funding above that amount must come from the commission’s general fund.

Additional funding in the amount of $43,000 would be required to meet the funding requests, which included an additional $10,000 from the area Boys and Girls Club bringing the club’s total request to $18,500.

Commissioner Joey Jackson said the funding has to stop somewhere and questioned taking an additional $43,000 from the commission’s general fund.