Wexford board to hold public hearing, vote on 2022 budget

In this Cadillac News file photo, Wexford County Administrator Janet Koch looks over the 2020 budget as she prepares to start the budget process for the fiscal year 2021. By the end of its meeting Wednesday, the Wexford County Board of Commissioners will likely complete an annual piece of business that is one of the most important things it does all year.

CADILLAC — By the end of its meeting Wednesday, the Wexford County Board of Commissioners will likely complete an annual piece of business that is one of the most important things it does all year.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the board is scheduled to hold a public meeting regarding its proposed 2022 budget, followed by a vote to approve the spending plan. The proposed general fund budget expenditures are roughly $15.6 million.

At the beginning of the new fiscal year on Jan. 1, the proposed budget shows the beginning fund balance will be $6.5 million with roughly $22.2 million in total revenues and fund balance.

Wexford County Administrator Janet Koch said the county is required, by state statute, to have a balanced budget and the 2022 proposed budget includes an assumption of 5% increased health insurance costs.

Koch said other costs in the 2022 budget include the new Human Resources Department, a number of new vehicles to update the County’s fleet and additional security measures.

Unlike last year where the budget process started in October, the current budget process started this past July. The first phase of the budget included all county departments/offices getting budget target information and blank budget worksheets.

The next phase had the department heads and elected officials working with Koch regarding submitted budget requests. The budget was completed by forwarded to the finance committee. After it was determined which department heads or elected officials the committee had present their budget and reviews were completed, the budget was forwarded to the full board of commissioners.

Once at the board of commissioners level, unresolved appeals regarding the budget from department heads were heard, and the document was drafted and presented to the board. At the Oct. 6 commissioners meeting, the board heard a brief budget presentation by Koch. Koch recommends that the commissioners approve the 2022 proposed budget.

For Wednesday’s meeting, there are four ways the public can attend: in person, by computer, by smartphone or by telephone.

To attend by computer, go to zoom.us and click on “Join” in the upper right-hand corner and use meeting ID 749 610 4141. If using a smartphone, install the Zoom application before the call, launch the Zoom app and join using meeting ID 749 610 4141.

Finally, if a person is attending the meeting by telephone, they should dial toll-free 646-876-9923 and enter the meeting ID of 749 610 4141#.

To see the full agenda, go to wexfordcounty.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Binder1-1.pdf

Staff Writer/Reporter

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