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Jasper County Proposed Budget for 2018 Boosts Election & Sherif - KOAM TV 7

Jasper County Proposed Budget for 2018 Boosts Election & Sheriff Funds

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CARTHAGE, MISSOURI -


The Jasper County auditor outlined the proposed budget for 2018 at a public hearing this morning.
          It
s a seventeen point nine million dollar budget that if approved would bring funding increases to the county clerk and the sheriff. 
Richard Webster explained why the sheriff deserved a financial boost when he said, "In 2017 we were only contributing two million seven hundred seventy-seven thousand and in 2016 we contributed two million nine sixty-two."
The county auditors proposed budget would add two hundred thousand to the sheriffs budget to bring in back to 2016 numbers.
It
s money the sheriff intends to spend on body cameras for patrol officers. Something discussed for years as other departments got them and after numerous trials.
Sheriff Randee Kaiser explained, "It
s such an ever changing field of technology,  we just want to make sure we make the best purchase,  really spend the money wisely. We'll get about forty body cameras and outfit our patrol staff with those cameras."

They've also budgeted to replace a twenty-five year old water pump at the jail, some shower doors and framing, and to give officers and staff another two percent raise like last year and merit raises when deserved. An investment the sheriff said can pay off in retention.
Kaiser said, "With the cost of turnover it makes it very difficult to train someone and spend all the time and getting them up to where they need to be and have them leave you for someone that
s paying a little bit more down the street. We figure it would be better off to have a salary more competitive with everybody in Jasper County. Thats where we're at now." 
 Besides body cameras and salaries the sheriff department is budgeting for ten new vehicles including a transport van.

Another area of the budget seeing an increase is the county clerks office for  elections.

Webster announced at the hearing, " To put before the people a renewal of our road and bridge tax."

Webster said every other year the budget is strained with elections and while this isn
t presidential year, he said it is still big with  a primary and general election. The clerks office would  get a two hundred eighty  thousand dollar budget increase.
With both big increases in spending there is little left for a cushion if sales taxes decline. Webster said the budget would have, "Sixteen point six  million in revenues, seventeen point nine million in expenditures which requires us to have a one point three million dollar carry over to balance." Webster expect to have that as of December 31st but he admits sales taxes are very uncertain especially as online sales surge which don
t currently result in local tax revenues.

The budget has  been posted on the county's website. Click here for a link

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