County adopts budget, will trim personnel |

County adopts budget, will trim personnel

Sheila Gardner

Douglas County commissioners unanimously adopted a $77.6 million budget Monday, balanced by trimming personnel and receiving an extra $229,000 in state sales tax revenue.

The budget includes a $42,708 surplus which is committed to fund the implementation of the county’s classification-compensation study.

“I want to commend the county manager and staff on preparing a balanced budget with a surplus and without a lot of hoopla,” said Commissioner Don Miner.

The budget must be forwarded to the state by June 1.

The 7.7 percent increase in sales tax revenue reflects a hike in the Consumer Price Index and an increase in Douglas County’s population, Holler told the board.

He said the budget does not include funds for the Community-Oriented Policing grant which aren’t allocated by the federal government until October. Douglas County’s fiscal year begins July 1.

“The state provided an update on the allocation of sales tax which resulted in $228,918 more for Douglas County,” Holler said in his report to the commissioners. “However, we have not received confirmation on the COPs grant and have not included grant revenue of $125,000.”

Commissioners agreed to allocate $10,500 to the Western Nevada Development District and use the next year to evaluate the agency’s benefit to the county.

“This agency has the potential to do some things. We can hold their feet to the fire. If they don’t, they’re on notice,” Holler said.

The board budgeted $5,000 for the Business Council of Douglas County to help hire a economic development liaison, but agreed to ask for more information about the program before the money is distributed.

The planning department’s budget was increased $130,000 to reflect a carryover of $80,000 for the new development code and $50,000 to study the creation of a county redevelopment agency.

District Attorney Scott Doyle, whose department is reducing the cost per hour to operate the Lake office, said the savings won’t affect service.

“We have not reduced staff levels at the Lake,” Doyle said. “We reduced the cost per hour, but the office stays open the same number of hours. There is no reduction in service.”

Holler reiterated his belief that personnel reduction will affect services.

“As we progress through the year, if some of the reductions are not sustainable they will be brought back to the board for further consideration,” he said.

Personnel were cut back or not replaced in community development, administrative services, sheriff’s office, district attorney’s Minden office, operational services, community services and the clerk-treasurer’s office.

The board also approved the budgets for East Fork fire and paramedic districts, Sierra Fire Protection and the towns of Gardnerville, Genoa and Minden.