At the December 13, 2017 meeting of the Clark County Commissioners, County Administrator Jennifer Hutchinson presented the preliminary budget for 2018 to the commissioners. During the preparation of the budget, all departments were asked to align their budgets with the strategic plan goals. These include develop a facilities master plan, combine City/County 911 Dispatch, eliminate opiate addiction/substance abuse, modernize fairgrounds, and develop a strategy for Clark County/City/CIC to grow the economy in Clark County.

The projected revenues for 2018 are $38,078,738, which is a 3.5% decrease from 2017. The decrease is largely due to the elimination of the Medicaid Sales Tax. Hutchinson expects a $1.2 million in decreased sales tax, but also expects the property tax revenues to fall by $370,000, and service charges to decrease by $170,000. However, she does expect investment income to increase by $400,000.

The expected expenditures for 2018 are $40,779,438, which is a 0.3% increase over 2017. The commissioners requested that every department in the county decrease their budget for 2018 by 3% due to falling revenues. The departments submitted budgets that reflected this goal with varying success. While some could cut their budgets by as much as 32%, others increased theirs by as much as 20%, which increased the overall projected expenditures by 0.3%. In addition, requests were made for an additional $4,620,196 for capital expenditures, supplemental, and miscellaneous requests. The supplemental requests include eight new sheriff deputies, on-call pay for the prosecutor’s office, a public information officer for the county commissioners, and a 2% cost of living increase. The capital requests included vehicles, firearms, infrastructure upgrades, and technical upgrades. Other request included operating expenses for NTPRD, Dayton Development, CIC, Soil and Water, and OSU Extension.

Hutchinson summed up the review with issues that the county needs to address for 2019, which include addressing a potential $2 million deficit in the general fund, stabilizing the sales tax revenue, focusing on intergovernmental collaboration, increasing efficiency, and economic development.

In regular business, the commissioners denied the assessment of $60 for a proposed countywide 911 system. The commissioners believe more discussion is needed with the City of Springfield and the townships before a final decision is made.

In addition, the commissioners authorized an agreement with the Ohio Department of Transportation for the County Engineer for a federal fund reimbursement for up to $27,720 for a ball bank study on curves. In addition, they authorized a decrease in the contract with Double Z Construction for the Derr Road project to reflect actual costs.

For the Utilities Director, the commissioners authorized a contract with Access Engineering Solutions for $16,800 to design an interconnecting waterline between Green Meadows One and Green Meadows Two to provide a second feed for water to Green Meadows One. The contract is effective December 13, 2017 through December 13, 2018.

The commissioners also approved a petition for Annexation from the City of Springfield for 23.92 acres on Titus Road from Springfield Township to the city. Furthermore, they authorized a filing of a Zoning Amendment to Springfield Township to create a land use designation of CP Champions Park District at the County Fairgrounds. The application also includes a request to rezone the fairgrounds property from A-Agriculture District and I-2 General Industrial district to CP-Champions Park District.

The next meeting of the Clark County Commissioners is scheduled for December 20, 2017 at 8:30 a.m. in the Commissioners’ Conference Room at 50 E Columbia.

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