The Marshall County Council yesterday approved the 2015 Convention and Visitors Bureau budget. CVB Executive Director Corey Hume says the $340,450 budget is similar to this year’s. Of that amount, $187,000 will be used solely for tourism advertising.
The Marshall County Council will review the annual Convention and Visitors Bureau budget when they meet this morning. Other agenda items include various requests for transfers and appropriations in order to close the year out in the black. The meeting starts at 9 a.m. EST on the second floor of the Marshall County building.
The Marshall County Council will meet tonight where several additional appropriation requests are on the table for approval.
A representative from the Argos Community School Corporation will request money from the rainy day fund for stipends, health insurance and utilities totaling $140,000. A request will also be made for a reduction in General Fund appropriation for health insurance and utilities in the amount of $120,360.
The Marshall County Council members discussed an additional appropriation for the Metronet project Monday morning.
The amount was for $250,000 out of the Rainy Day Fund which is the amount St. Joseph County is expected to pay for the project.
Auditor Penny Lukenbill explained that Trinity Health sent in $125,000 for their portion of the cost in August which was appropriated last month. The county is anticipating St. Joseph County’s portion of $250,000 this week. Lukenbill stated that she wants to be prepared for when that happens.
Judge Dean Colvin explained that the shortfall in the budget is due to a contract with the public defenders.
“In regards to the contract that we have with our current public defenders and the request we made in 2013 to cover 2014 expenses in the additional increase in pay that we provided when we reorganized in the public defenders fund, we have now come to a point where we are in a shortfall. It’s primarily due to that new contract.”
The Marshall County Council members will consider several additional appropriations in their monthly meeting today.
Marshall County Superior Court No. 2 Judge Dean Colvin will request $30,000 in an additional appropriation for pauper council while Sheriff Tom Chamberlin will discuss a $3,000 request for overtime.
A request for $250,000 from the Rainy Day Fund to cover the cost of the Metronet project is on the agenda. St. Joseph County recently paid that for their cost of the project which was placed into the Rainy Day Fund. The council members will now take out that money to complete payment on the project.
The Marshall County Council members approved additional appropriation requests from Marshall County Coroner Bill Cleavenger in the amount of $26,500 to cover costs.
Cleavenger explained that this has been a rather active year for his department. He has had to oversee more autopsies than anticipated and more incidents in which to respond. Approximately $21,000 was needed for the autopsy line item, $4,000 for toxicology, $1,000 for radiology and $500 for morgue supplies.
With the 2015 budget approved, the Marshall County Council looked at the insurance impact to the budget and how it will affect employees.
In the past, county employees paid $1.00 for their insurance. With the analysis of premium rates for next year, the county braced for a 20 to 25 percent increase in premiums for 2015.
The Marshall County Council members approved the 2015 budget after making over $300,000 in cuts.
They initially cut $177,654 out of the General Fund with the sheriff’s budget and the prosecutor’s budget getting hit the hardest. The council also decided to move $216,859 in the sheriff’s pension to the certified shares portion of the budget. With those changes, the $9,041,321 all-funds budget was approved.
The Marshall County Council will meet this morning with quite a few items on the agenda.
The council members will hear several additional appropriation requests. The coroner will request several thousand dollars for the autopsy, toxicology and radiology line items plus additional money for morgue supplies. The surveyor is requesting $25,000 for a vehicle purchase and there is a request to take money from the rainy day fund to go toward the Metronet project in the amount of $125,000.
Marshall County Sheriff Tom Chamberlin has four positions he needs to fill within his department.
The Marshall County Council members entertained his request to advertise for those full-time positions.
“I can fill two full-time positions at this time and tentatively I’ve got two jailer-dispatchers that have received conditional offers of employment as police officers so I might be losing two more,” stated Chamberlin.
The Marshall County Council approved a transfer of funds to take care of the salaries for the two new positions developed at the highway department.
The positions of highway superintendent and general foreman were eliminated and the duties of those two departments were split between two new positions in the highway administration manager and the supervisor of county highways.
The Marshall County Council will meet today at 9 a.m. ET.
Sheriff Tom Chamberlin will request employee replacements as well as Mary Jane Walsworth from the probation department. Laura Mann will have an update on the Heminger House.
The council members will entertain an additional appropriation request for the 7th Road construction project in the amount of $252,000 from the cumulative bridge fund. The council members will also discuss a salary amendment for a WIC employee.
Commissioner Deb Griewank presented the Marshall County Council members with a request to add two job descriptions to the highway department as approved by the personnel committee.
She explained that the two positions are the result of a different direction in which the committee has envisioned.
The Marshall County Council members discussed additional appropriations for the highway department and the health department Monday morning.
The highway department requested $55,000 for road paint. Interim Superintendent Jason Peters explained that the paint should last the rest of the season and it was purchased at a cheaper rate than last year. The crews are set to stripe a lot of the main roads this year with this paint.
The Marshall County Council members will meet today where several items will be discussed on the agenda.
A representative of the personnel committee will approach the council with job description changes for the highway administrative manager and the supervisor of county highways. The council members will consider additional appropriations from court services for a case work manager in the amount of $21,384. The request includes wages and benefits. The highway department is asking for an additional appropriation of $55,000 for road paint and $300,000 for vehicle maintenance. The health department is asking for $5,000 to take care of unsafe buildings.
The Marshall County Commissioners and the Marshall County Council met in joint session Monday morning to discuss the possibility of refinancing the bonds the county took out when the Marshall County Jail was built back in 2006.
The bond for the jail project was roughly $15 million in 2006 and $11 million is still outstanding. The county is hoping to lower their payment of $1.2 million per year until 2026.
The Marshall County Commissioners and the Marshall County Council will meet in joint session today at 9 a.m. ET in the commissioner’s meeting room on the second floor of the Marshall County Building.
The members are going to discuss an option to refinance the Marshall County Jail Bonds of 2006.
Several department heads went before the Marshall County Council members this week to discuss some of the items for consideration in the 2015 budget.
Interim Highway Superintendent Jason Peters said that more staff would be ideal for the department.
“We’re minus eight people. That really hinders some of our operations especially come spring time when we could actually be out berming roads. When I first started in 2004 we were always able to go out and start berming in the spring. Right now we don’t have the personnel to be able to pull those people off – the guys that are patching roads as opposed to being able to go out and start berming. I would be inclined to ask for three more positions if possible – two more truck drivers and one more operator,” said Peters.
The Marshall County Council heard several requests from department heads for consideration for the 2015 budget.
One item is the upgrade of the 911 system at the Marshall County Jail. Matt Pitney, the 911 Supervisor, said the current system is at least ten years old. He added that parts are no longer available for repairs and a service agreement will no longer be an option since the company servicing the equipment has been bought out and that company has decided to “end of life” that system.