BREAKING NEWS – A public hearing was held late this afternoon by the Cumberland County Budget Committee regarding the proposed fiscal year 2019-2020 budget. The budget this year for Cumberland County is $110.3 million with no property tax increase. County Finance Director Nathan Brock said one reason for the no increase in property taxes was a strong sales tax collection. The budget includes funding for three new deputies with the sheriff’s department.
The public hearing lasted 10 minutes.
The full Cumberland County Commission then met this evening at 6 p.m. for a special called session.
County Mayor Allen Foster held a moment of silence to honor the memory of former county commissioner Harry Sabine and former Crossville businesswoman Sally Mayberry.
The commission was then set to vote on the proposed budget.
It was broke down into three resolutions.
The first resolution fixed the tax levy in Cumberland County, Tennessee for the fiscal year starting July 1, 2019. It includes a general fund tax rate of $0.6411, a solid waste/sanitation fund tax rate of $0.1407, a general purpose school fund tax rate of $0.5410 and a general debt service fund tax rate of $0.2425 for a combined property tax rate of $1.5653. This resolution passed unanimously with Commissioners Darrell Threet and John Patterson saying they could have done better with the budget.
The second resolution was in regards to making appropriations for the various funds, departments, institutions, offices and agencies of Cumberland County, Tennessee for the year beginning July 1, 2019 and ending June 30, 2020. Commissioner Jim Blaylock made a motion to amend this resolution to include a one-time presentation of $100,000 out of the general fund to go to the sheriff’s department to help with their overtime costs. Commissioner Rebecca Stone cautioned the commission saying if this was approved, it could potentially unravel the budget as it was very carefully considered and worked on. The motion received a second but failed with commissioners Rebecca Stone, Charles Seiber, Terry Lowe, Wendell Wilson, Mark Baldwin, Jerry Cooper, Sue York and Nancy Hyder casting the no votes. Commissioners Gibson and Norris abstained because of both working for the sheriff’s department. The original resolution was brought back for a vote and passed 14 to 2 with commissioners Jim Blaylock and John Patterson voting no.
The third and final resolution was for appropriations to non-profit charitable organizations of Cumberland County, Tennessee for the year beginning July 1, 2019 and ending June 30, 2020. This passed unanimously.
The budget highlights include:
- $59.2 million for the Board of Education
- Two percent raise for all employees, full and part time
- Funding for an updated wage study
- Three new sheriff department deputies with all associated expenses, including vehicles
- Two additional EMTs for the Basic Life Support (BLS) ambulance, allowing it to go to 16-hour shifts, seven days a week.
- A new employee for the County Clerk’s office
- Part time help at the animal shelter and library
- $1.4 million spent in capital expenditures
- Five replacement vehicles for the sheriff’s department
- 82 SCBA air tanks for the fire department
- Windows and gutters for the courthouse
- Election poll pads for the election commission
- HVAC Units
- EMS parking lot repair
- Maintenance and repairs at the community complex
The 2019-2020 budget is broke down into the following categories:
General Fund – $27,775,583
Courthouse and Jail Maintenance – $31,000
Solid Waste/Sanitation – $2,577,947
Drugs Control Fund – $76,235
Other Special Revenue Fund – $10,000
Highway/Public Works Fund – $4,347,503
General Purpose School Fund – $59,227,773
Federal Programs – $4,345,559
Central Cafeteria Fund (schools) – $5,401,970
General Debt Service Fund – $6,510,786
The appropriations to non-profit charitable organizations in Cumberland County include:
Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce – $52,500
Fair Park Senior Center – $25,775
Fairfield Glade Fire Department – $20,000
Hilltoppers – $17,100
Cumberland County Rescue Squad – $12,000
Avalon Center – $5,000
Court Appointed Special Advocates – $5,000
Pleasant Hill Historical Society – $5,000
Veterans Honor Guard – $4,500
Wags and Whiskers – $4,000
Young Marines – $1,200