Budgets for jails, public safety sales tax to be considered by quorum committees

Six-month budgets for the juvenile detention center, adult jail and the receipts from the Public Safety sales tax will be considered when committees of the Jefferson County Quorum Court meet.

Justices of the Peace will meet Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in the quorum courtroom of the county courthouse.

When the 2013 budgets for the other county agencies and departments were approved in December, the county’s legislative body held off on jail and public safety budgets for the jails and public safety sales tax due to an anticipated revenue shortfall of up to $2.4 million.

The Finance Committee of the court later approved keeping those budgets at the same level as last year in January while they talked about how to deal with the shortfall, with the outcome of those meetings being to approve a six-month budget and then look at how cost saving measures as well as measures to increase revenue were working out.

The six-month budget for the juvenile detention center was set at $907,712, the proposed ordinance said.

The proposed adult jail budget was fixed at $2,001,403 for six months, with that money coming from the adult jail fund ($565,000), Detention Facilities Maintenance and Operation Fund ($1,222,750) and the Public Safety Sales Tax Fund ($213,653).

The proposed public safety sales tax ordinance breaks down how the projected $952,848 will be spent, with $100,000 going to rural fire protection, $452,847 for the sheriff’s department including the jail, and $400,000 going to the juvenile detention center.

The three proposed budgets will run through June 30.

In other business, the justices of the peace will consider an appropriation ordinance for $8,100 for wildlife education and conservation programs, with the funds coming from an Arkansas Game and Fish Commission grant that was funding by fines collected in Jefferson County.

A resolution approving an agreement between the county road department and Little Rock based Riggs Caterpillar to buy and finance equipment for the road department will also be considered.

In a letter to County Judge Dutch King, Road Department Director Jimmy O’Falllon said Riggs is offering to sell a used 2007 ditching machine and a 2005 paving machine to the county, and will finance the payments.

O’Fallon said the county is expecting to receive additional revenue from the highway tax and those funds will be used to pay for the equipment.

He said buying the two machines will help the road department with the backlog of work they currently have.

Also on the agenda Tuesday:

• A $104,176.51 appropriation for the Recycling Resource Recovery Fund with the money coming from a grant from the Southeast Arkansas Economic Development District.

• A $30,842 supplemental appropriation to District Court with the money coming from the District Court Fund. The appropriation ordinance will pay for salary changes for court personnel.