2017-06-12 / Front Page

Public can have input on proposed county budget

By LARRY HILLIARD
Ledger Staff Writer

Residents will get their say during Monday’s Cherokee County Council meeting on the proposed new $24.5 million budget that has been described by one councilman as fiscally irresponsible.

Cherokee County Councilman Charles Mathis has warned that draining the county’s savings to pay for cost-of-living and longevity raises for county employees of nearly $1 million a year could imperil the county’s financial stability.

The new budget takes $3,564,422 of its local option sales tax (LOST) fund to balance the budget.

Mathis has argued that if revenues remain flat and the county continues to fully fund the pay raises each year, council would drain its LOST money in about three years and would nearly wipe out all of its current $20 million fund balance in less than 10 years.

The new budget also funds assistant administrator and deputy coroner positions and boosts funding for the Clemson Extension Service.

Council will also hold public hearings for volunteer fire departments’ tax district budgets that include slight millage hikes for the Buffalo, CKC and Corinth VFDs.

The public hearings will take place before final reading of the budgets that will take effect July 1.

The council meeting will begin at 5 p.m.

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