Thursday, July 18, 2024
Happening Now

Fentress Budget In Good Shape; Discussions Set

Fentress County officials expect to pass a balanced budget in the coming days with no change in property tax and employee raises included.

Fentress County Executive Jimmy Johnson said inflation forces the department heads to adjust their expectations from year-to-year. He said this year, directors have been conservative. Johnson said the county plans to add 50-cent raises for all employees and $1 raises for employees with at least one year of service to the county.

“You can’t blame anyone for trying to do better for themself,” Johnson said. “You know, you hate to lose employees, but if they’re doing better for themself, you can’t feel bad against that because we would all do that more than likely, so. But hopefully, we’re trying to stay competitive as best that we can do.”

Johnson said the Ambulance Service budget came in high, but Director Daniel Coleman has been easy to work with, adjusting to what the county can afford to provide. He said the department was hoping for two ambulance remounts but has been open to settling for one.

“Our Ambulance Service, like I said, is doing a good job up there for us,” Johnson said. “And we’re trying to fulfill, you know, the needs that they need, and as far as others also. But the commission came back then and made some cuts on some things and we’ve not heard too many complaints about the cuts yet. So, up here, everybody’s trying to work together and do the best they can.”

Johnson said the county has no major capital projects slated, which makes balancing a budget far more simple.

“Overall, our whole group has been really good so far,” Johnson said. “Of course, we’re not finished with the budget yet. We still have another night or two of meetings to, hopefully, get it taken care of. You know, all around about, we’re going to be a little ahead of our budget process this year as we were last year, but it’s going pretty well. You know, we’re going to be in pretty good shape I believe. This is according to where we’re at right now. Now, next week might be a different story.”