Gates Co. budget approved

Published 8:01 am Tuesday, July 15, 2014

GATESVILLE – The costs associated with operating Gates County local government are on the rise, but the tax burden on its citizens remains the same.

The Gates County Board of Commissioners has approved the FY 2014-15 local government budget. That financial spreadsheet calls for $11,069,990 in operational expenses for the General Fund, an increase from last year’s $10.14 million. However, the tax rate remains at 64 cents (per $100 of real property value).

The board favored the new budget by a 5-0 vote at their June 16 meeting. It included a one percent cost of living salary adjustment for county employees. The budget and the salary hike are effective July 1.

Within the General Fund, Gates County Schools ($2.7 million) and the Department of Social Services (a combined $1.56 million divided among several programs) gained the top appropriations. The Gates County Sheriff’s Office receives $867,736 in the new budget. GITS ($624,922), Financial Services ($382,523), Buildings and Grounds ($354,594), Tax Department ($312,388), Child Day Care ($300,436), Emergency Services ($271,482), and Jail services ($209,200) were among the other top appropriations.

The total budget came in at $15,353,330, to include nearly $1 million ($987,721) in annual debt service payments made by the county, $1.26 million in the Water & Sewer Fund, $782,000 in the Solid Waste Fund, $442,100 in the Capital Improvement Fund, $374,449 in the Emergency 911 Fund, and $260,000 in the Fire Protection Fund.

As expected, the major sources of revenue fueling the budget are ad valorem taxes – $5.31 million for property and $489,600 for vehicles. State sales tax returned to Gates County accounted for $1.26 million of the expected revenue.

The new budget is also built on $227,000 appropriated from the county’s fund balance.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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