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Council scales back budget funding cuts


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The financial health of Bartholomew County government is looking better than it was only a few weeks ago.

The Bartholomew County Council reached a consensus Tuesday night to add back $48,974 that had been previously cut from the tentative spending plan for 2013, as well as a 2.5 percent raise for county employees.

But even with the pay hikes and add-backs, the council is still more than $40,000 below its target budget level of $21.74 million. Their target is the amount established by the council that is intended to ensure a sound financial basis next year.

No actual vote was taken during Tuesday’s meeting. The first actual vote on the preliminary budget is scheduled for next Tuesday.

A vote on the final version of the 2013 budget is scheduled for Oct. 9.

Former cuts that will be restored in the preliminary budget include:

$15,000 for utility payments by the County Parks Department.

$23,850 to bring the pay of third-shift sheriff’s deputies in line with their counterparts at the Columbus Police Department.

$8,674 to provide public defenders their first raise in seven years.

$1,450 to increase County Attorney Grant Tucker’s salary.

All of those funds will be restored to the preliminary general fund budget. An additional $1,476 from a separate fund was approved to provide poll workers an additional $25 during the November election.

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