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New department requires new county budget timeline
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A new cog in the wheel requires Warren County officials to set a timeline for establishing a 2013-14 fiscal year budget by July 15. The addition being the county’s new Finance Department.
The Financial Management System Act of 1981, which the county enacted last year to combine the finance departments of the Warren County Government, Warren County Schools and the Warren County Highway Department into one new department, requires the county to set a timeline.
Outlining the timeline was Warren County finance director Linda Hillis.
“In February, the department will start outlining their needs and submit their budget requests by the end of February,” said Hillis.
Committees will met with their perspective department heads in March to consider the budgets. Final recommendations and presentations will be sent to the Budget and Finance Committee by the end of March.
In March, Budget and Finance will also consider proposed budgets for the Warren County Board of Education after being approved by its Education Committee and Warren County Highway Department after approval from Highway and Bridge Committee.
“Hopefully, by the end of March, we will have the committees met and have everything ready for Budget and Finance Committee members to consider in April,” said Hillis. “The committee will have the month of April to review revenue and proposed budgets by committees and by the end of April, recommend a budget and a tax rate to the Financial Management Committee.”
Prior to the 81 Act, Budget and Finance Committee was the last step in the process prior to being sent to the full court. Now, the information will be sent to the Financial Management Committee first.
In May, the Financial Management Committee will consider all the proposed budget requests and tax rate.
“If changes are necessary, the committee is authorized to make those,” said Hillis.
Upon approval from Financial Management Committee, the proposed budget and tax rate will be presented to the full court for its approval on July 15.
“That would give our department the month of June to prepare all the documents and get them ready for publication,” said Hillis.
The timeline is preliminary and changes could still be made, says Warren County Executive John Pelham.