County Budget Approved, Commissioners Cut Back On Each Road District Budget

TUESDAY – As the Wayne County Board of Commissioners met for their first regularly scheduled September meeting Tuesday morning the budget and renovation project were showcased.

From the Wayne County Courthouse courtroom, public hearings were opened and closed to inform those who attended about the 2019-20 Wayne County budget.

One of the top highlights to take away from the budget is that each county commissioner took a $25,000 cut in their road district budget. During the budget work sessions, commissioner Terry Sievers (District 1) thought the group needed to lead by example and reduce their budget. Instead of taking a $25,000 increase and with the cut, the total reduction was $150,000 that the county will use.

Fund 802 includes a $500,000 payment of the 2016 Rural Road Improvement Bond “paving South Centennial Project” and among the County Improvement Fund will feature another $500,000 for almost completely for the courthouse restoration project.

Commissioners approved the budget of $23,511,291.79 with a total tax dollar increase of 2% (89,707.31) and a total valuation increase of 2%. Also, the tax levy didn’t rise much at all as a $100,000 house would see an increase of 0.575 cents (0.000575 cents per $100 valuation).

Jerry Berggren with Berggren Architects was also on hand to answer questions from the commissioners about the Courthouse Exterior Restoration project. The main reason for Jerry’s trip was to go over the gutter system along the eastside of the courthouse and north of the entrance.

Berggren assured the commissioners they will construct it the way to their liking. Instead of rocking the area, they will cover the gutter system with a fiberglass grate, which will need to be removable, while adding the concrete back. No price has been set as of the meeting. Jerry also stated that 65-70% of the concrete work for the gutter was complete and they are getting close to their time frame.

The shingles have been ordered as five of the six colors on the shingle that Berggren submitted were approved and will arrive in about five weeks. Also, Wayne County will be hosting a custodial workshop on Thursday, October 17 as the lineup of speakers is still being finalized but a member of Wayne County will talk during this workshop about their project.

Wayne County highway superintendent Mark Casey and Mark Mainelli with Mainelli Wagner & Associates planned on meeting with NextEra energy Tuesday afternoon. The wind energy company working on the Sholes Wind project were disputing driveway accesses and have not paid a bill of around $59,000. During budget talk, NextEra did reimburse the county $214,584.58 for road expenses.

The next regularly scheduled Wayne County Board of Commissioners meeting will be on Tuesday, September 17 at 9 a.m.