Supes approve balanced budget
Sept. 18, 2012 — Lassen County’s 2012-2013 budget is now in the books, and the ink is black.
Lassen County’s Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a balanced $101 million budget at its Tuesday, Sept. 11 meeting.
The county estimates it will receive $16.5 million in general fund revenues from local taxes and will enjoy a surplus of more than $250,000 at year’s end.
The remainder of the funding in the budget comes from grants, contracts and numerous varied state and federal funding sources.
The county budget projects estimated revenues of $90 million with a fund balance of $29.4 million for a total of $119.5 million in total funds available.
County departments requested $98.7 million and the county administrative officer recommended a budget of $101 million. The fund balance at the end of the year is projected to be 18.4 million.
District 4 Supervisor Brian Dahle said the budget was balanced and “doesn’t dip into reserves, and we can move forward.”
District 2 Supervisor Jim Chapman pointed out the budget woes in neighboring counties and called the budget issues in Plumas County “gut-wrenching.”
He said other counties have spent beyond their means, but Lassen County has not.
District 3 Supervisor Larry Wosick suggested county staff include last year’s actual spending as part of the budgeting documents in the future.
County staff said those numbers are available in another part of the budget, but they could be included as he requested.
District 1 Supervisor Bob Pyle said he didn’t believe the budget was balanced because the county was spending more than it was taking it. By his calculations, the county was spending about $1.75 million more than it received by using reserves and one-time funds.
“That’s really deficit spending,” Pyle said. “If I’m wrong, I’m wrong. Somebody explain it to me.”
Chapman said the county had reserves to be used when needed, and he feared the state would take back the one-time funding if the county did not spend it.
Dahle, who is a candidate for the state assembly, said, “This is the last important vote I’ll make in this county.”
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