Budget planning set

Published 10:03 am Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Members of the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors are set to discuss items related to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019-2020 budget during its meeting Thursday.

The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the Lunenburg County Courthouse.

The board is expected to review several requests from county departments for funding.

The county electoral board, according to the March meeting board packet, requested allocations related to the upcoming elections.

“The majority (about 75 percent) of the rest of our budget is dictated by the number of elections that are held during the fiscal year,” a memorandum from the electoral board to the board of supervisors cited.

There are three elections set for the FY 2019-2020, which include the November 2019 general election, the March 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary and the June 2020 Virginia Primary. If there is no Virginia primary in 2020, the funds would not be spent and would return to the county.

Line items associated with each election include part-time wages for election officials in 12 precincts at $6,500 per election, voting machine programming at $2,000 per election, and rent for polling places at $200 per election.

The repair and maintenance line items could be reduced from $5,000 to $1,000. Annual maintenance, according to the memo, comes to approximately $5,775. The electoral board was using voting machine funds for this item, but said this is an ongoing expense.

The memorandum also outlined the encouraged schedule for the assistant registrar at 16 hours a week during normal times and approximately 160 hours three weeks before and one week after an election.

The salary for the general registrar is set by the state. The estimated salary for the assistant registrar, under this schedule, comes to $13,440. If the June primary is not held, this would reduce the salary by $1,152.

The Lunenburg County Sheriff’s Office submitted budget items relating to its 911 center that include a new Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system expected to go live in the county between March and April of this year.

The cost of the agreement is estimated at $12,900 annually and includes on-site maintenance and software upgrades. The amount would be due April 2020.

Representative Donald Penland cited in the memorandum that the office has the capacity for in-house mapping and has canceled a monthly agreement with an outside provider.

The in-house mapping is estimated to be approximately $6,300 annually, a net increase of $429.96. This development would require an increase of the department’s maintenance agreement line item, which would increase from $18,000 to $20,000. This funding would be taken from the repairs and maintenance line item, decreasing the total amount for that item from $35,000 to $33,000.

Lastly, Penland cited that the county is expected to come to a decision concerning the Mitigation Proposal for Next Generation 911, upgrades to the county’s 911 system.

After consulting with several vendors, Penland cited that WestTel provides the most efficient cost solution at $154,990. The Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA) has agreed to supplement $150,000 to the new system. This decision would require a one-time allocation of $4,990 from the county.

The total cost of the maintenance agreement items, which include the CAD system, the mapping system and other maintenance items come to $19,990.50.

The Lunenburg County Sheriff’s Office also requested flat funding but requested to move a budget line item from maintenance service contract to office supplies in order to purchase a copier machine in place of renting one.

The Commissioner of the Revenue Office requested flat funding with the exception of a 3-percent salary increase for constitutional officers that was approved by the Virginia Senate and House of Delegates. The item would need final approval by the Governor in April.

The proposed increase would raise the total wages of three employees of the Commissioner of the Revenue office from $139,453 to $143,637.

The Treasurer’s Office reflects a similar 3-percent raise that would increase wages from a total of $144,500 to $148,835. The proposed raise would be in effect July 1.

The Lunenburg Commonwealth’s Attorney Office requested an additional $5 per month to compensate for a rise in water and sewer costs in the county, an additional $900 per year for telephone expenses, and asked in a memorandum about whether the additional funding related to assistant commonwealth attorney Baxter Stegall, approved by the board of supervisors last year should be included in the FY 2019-2020 budget.

The Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE) requested $44,359 in county contributions, an increase of $990 from the previous FY due to slight increases in state and salary benefits.