WILMINGTON — Budget season has begun at the courthouse where county commissioners on Monday heard $16.4 million in revenue projected for the 2016 general fund.
At the same session, a staffer with the Clinton County Auditor’s Office advised that a five-year, 0.5 percent additional local sales tax is set to expire about a year from now.
“It’s also important to bring that up now, just to get a planning mechanism in place of how you’re going to address that,” said Logan Bailey of the auditor’s office.
Clinton County Commissioner Mike Curry said he believes the county will receive its last collection in the tax’s five-year term in November 2016.
Clinton County Commissioner Kerry R. Steed said, “While it may not affect ’16, it could severely affect ’17.”
The added local sales tax generated $2.39 million in 2013 and $2.58 million in 2014.
Clinton County’s estimated revenue from real estate tax is projected to be $2.62 million in 2016 — an increase of $445,594 above the real estate tax dollars collected in 2014. Officials at the meeting attributed the anticipated rise to higher CAUV (Current Agricultural Use Value) farmland values.
The casino gambling tax is estimated to bring in $480,000 to Clinton County in 2016, according to Monday’s presentation.
The 2016 budget also was the topic when commissioners met Monday with Tony Nye, the OSU Extension educator, agriculture and natural resources, for Clinton County. He asked that the existing position of Clinton County Junior Fair coordinator be made a permanent part-time job rather than a temporary assignment.
The change would mean additional funding of $9,937, including benefits.
Clinton County Agricultural Society President Scot Gerber was present and supported the proposal.
Nye said the 4-H program is blessed with adult volunteers, but there remains a need for a paid Junior Fair coordinator to occupy a leadership role.
“At some point you have to say, ‘How many more times can I call upon our volunteers to step in and do some things?’ ” said Nye.
Having Junior Fair Coordinator Anne Foxworthy also enables Tracie Montague, the local OSU Extension educator for 4-H and youth development, to “deal with [4-H] club issues rather than fair issues,” Nye said.
Steed said he expects to be “an advocate” for the $9,900 funding increase “because enhanced services are added for the Junior Fair.”
“The county fair and 4-H program are the centerpiece to the ag community in the county,” added Steed.
Apart from the change to the Junior Fair coordinator position, Nye also requested an increase in the county Extension office’s 2016 operating budget, from $138,300 this year to $145,215 “to cover increased costs and maintain day-to-day business.”
If both requests are granted, the Extension office funding would total $155,152.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768 or on Twitter @GHuffenberger.