Finance committee bringing CIP, fee increases to County Commission
The approval of the Capital Improvement Plan budget for the 2019 fiscal year is finally slated to be an agenda item on the county’s next meeting, and if Polk County Commissioners approve, the group could soon start purchasing the equipment and technology it needs to thrive.
County manager Matt Denton announced the budget’s rough draft would circulate beforehand, and if no changes are needed, the document should be set in stone during the upcoming October meeting, set for after press time on Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 7 p.m.
The County Commission’s finance committee discussed amendments during their additional September meeting, but the most recent change came in the form of funds being promised to a mobile command center that would allow police officers to respond to high-risk situations more effectively with surveillance, wireless communication, wireless networking, and more.
The vehicles can also give police the ability to analyze evidence immediately, and staying safe and dry is a solid perk for law enforcement.
The EMA’s original CIP had a mobile command post listed, but the high cost of the vehicle resulted in it being cut from the budget. Now, with the expenses amended, the group is hoping to acquire one for approximately $50,000.
An approved FY 2019 CIP budget would join the likes of the FY 2019 budget that was recently finalized, and only the proposed 2020 SPLOST would need completing afterward.
Each budget gives Polk different spending abilities, so completing the documents has been a priority for the group.
“The SPLOST is a funding mechanism,” Denton said. “The CIP is a needs assessment for each department.”
The county’s new fee schedule isn’t far behind the CIP, and commissioner Scotty Tillery hopes to see a rough draft presented and discussed at the October meeting as well.
After taking suggestions and making amendments, voting on the item could potentially take place in November.
The currently proposed structure sees larger sums of money posed against ordinance violators and criminals, but some licensing fees and other non-criminal payments could also see an increase. While more money across the board, the fee structure is still lower than certain surrounding counties and neighboring communities served as inspiration for some of the fees.
The updated structure affects only offenses and licensing where monetary sums are naturally applied already.
“I’ve got one more meeting with superior clerks office, one more with magistrate, and one more with probation- I should have all my fees in a nice format to present,” Tillery said. “I want everyone to soak it in because we’ve beat it.”
A second finance committee meeting was needed for Polk County in September to cover all the topics of discussion.