Commissioners increase county's proposed budget by $150,000

Bulk of funds would go for new government center roof
Jun. 10, 2013 @ 07:10 PM

The Lee County Board of Commissioners agreed to add more than $150,000 to the county's proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year — including a $100,000 expenditure for an emergency roof repair — during its final budget meeting Monday. 

County officials were hoping the roof of the Lee County Government Center would last through one more budget cycle, but Tropical Storm Andrea caused leaks on the fourth floor of the building during the previous weekend, according to Lee County Manager John Crumpton.  

The $150,000 increase will not impact the projected property tax rate of 72 cents per $100 valuation, down three cents from the current rate, he said. Crumpton said the money for the roof repairs would likely come from the county's general fund balance.

General Services Director Russell Spivey said he hopes they will be able to begin repairs this week once the roof dries. 

"We started replacing sections of the roof in 2009-2010," he said. "Money was tight, and we were stretched thin, but we were making repairs and hoping to get a few more years out of it. Unfortunately, nature played its role."

Commissioner Amy Dalrymple made the motion to begin repairs immediately. 

"I want to commend Russell on trying to string it out," she said. 

The other cuts or increases to Crumpton's $63.5 million budget were determined during a series of budget workshops with the various county departments and commissioners. They gathered Monday at the government center to review the changes before Crumpton makes his final adjustments.  

The commissioners increased the budget to fund a county space needs study, travel and conferences for commissioners, upgrades for tax appraisal's software and to cover costs associated with a new bank contract, among other items. Cuts were made made to fees and dues for the Base Realignment and Closure Commission and funding for various nonprofits. 

A full list of projected cuts and increases is available online at www.sanfordherald.com.

Commissioners are set vote on the budget ordinance during its June 28 meeting.