County Council approves $41 million budget for 2018

Kosciusko County Council finished its budget work with very little changes for the 2018 spending plan.

Council approved a total budget of $41,501,626 for 2018, an increase of $3.5 million over what was approved for 2017, according to documents made available today.

The county general budget, which is part of the overall spending plan, is a more accurate accounting of day-to-day operations.

The county general budget will see a 2.1 percent hike. The 2018 budget will be $21,910,676, which is $451,939 more than planned for in 2017, according to the documents.

Council also approved a salary budget that includes up to a 3-percent raise for all workers.

The county wage committee made the recommendation and encouraged department heads to adjust salary hikes downward after considering job performance.

The 3-percent hike represents the biggest in recent years, officials said.

In previous budget meetings, council made very few trims to proposals submitted by department heads.

The biggest cut from proposed budgets was a request for an additional deputy prosecutor with a salary in the $80,000 range.

County officials still need to determine what to do with the drug court, which has been operating on money through grants. Officials learned last month that grant money would not be available for next year and the funding would cease at the end of September.

The Kosciusko County Community Corrections Advisory Board will meet Monday to consider a plan to absorb the drug court into the community corrections program, which relies on money from the Indiana Department of Corrections and user fees.