Warren County government’s fee-based departments are being incorporated into its fiscal year budget.
The Warren County Clerk and Master, Warren County Circuit Court Clerk, Warren County Clerk, Warren County Trustee, and Warren County Register of Deeds will be turning all their fees over to the county’s General Fund.
“Auditors have recommended that fee offices be taken off fees,” said Finance Department director Linda Hillis.
In prior years, those departments paid salaries out of fees collected. Remaining revenue is submitted to the county on a regular basis throughout the year.
By a resolution considered by the full Warren County Commission on Monday night, those departments will now submit all fees to the county every month. Salaries and expenses will be paid out of money given to the departments similar to Warren County Animal Control and Adoption Center which receives a set amount to cover salaries and other expenses throughout the fiscal year.
“It’s not going to change the letters of agreement that they have to sign every year,” said Hillis. “It will just change the way they are paid. Their pay will come through county budget and not through fees.”
The change puts those departments in line with the other county departments which are not fee based.
Commissioner Scott Rubley says at least one fee-based department is not self-funded and has to routinely ask for additional monies from the county to cover payroll.
“Register of Deeds was having to draw because they didn’t have enough funding,” Rubley.
Hillis stated, “For those offices that don’t collect enough fees to even make their payroll, this would allow them to continue to operate their offices. It would be coming out of the budget as a budgeted item, instead of fees.”
The measure was unanimously approved. It will go into effect at the end of the 2018-19 fiscal year.