LIMA — Allen County commissioners approved annual appropriations for the general funds of the 2015 budget at their Thursday board meeting. While the approvals themselves took only a few minutes, there was a lot of work prior to that, according to commissioner Cory Noonan.
“This was a culmination of four to five months of work in the fall. We spent a great deal of time, beginning in August and going through the fall, with our goal of having preliminary numbers together by Thanksgiving,” he said. “This is somewhat a formality. The Revised Code does not allow us to pass the budget until the first of the year.”
The general fund, funded primarily through the county’s sales tax, will have over $25.1 million in appropriations this year, with no significant changes from last year. The overall budget is expected to be 0.45 percent less than last year, with most offices receiving minor changes in funding. The prosecutor’s office will receive an overall increase of 10 percent, with the extra funds going to pay for an additional staff member.
“There are no surprises,” Noonan said. “We’re hoping that the holiday season provides for an uptick in revenues from the sales tax. That’s the primary revenue to the county. Our revenues have consistently remained pretty flat, so there are no surprises there.”
With budget appropriations now formally approved, the commissioners will soon turn their attention to capital improvements.
“We’ve done a really good job over the last decade of maintaining our buildings with the dollars we had,” Noonan said. “Unfortunately, there are some significant, not just cosmetic, but structural needs in our buildings, and the commissioners are committed to assessing and trying to take care of those needs.”