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Budget Shaping Up

Sonora, CA — The Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors voted to move some money around in the proposed 2014-15 budget in order to hire an additional staff member.

The board decided to remove $45,000 dollars from the budget that had been allotted for the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance. Instead, that money will go towards the salary of an an additional deputy County Counsel.  The remaining revenue to cover the salary will come from  Behavioral Health dollars available and contingency funds.

District 4 Supervisor John Gray opposed that budget change saying, “I believe we should address the personnel issues at the end in the September final budget.  I don’t think this is the time to do it. We don’t have all our money together.”

District 3 Evan Royce countered, “I know this position (County Counsel) has been talked about for a long time and there’s a bottleneck in that office that is holding up a lot of things.  Correcting that will help us achieve some of our other goals.”

This does not mean the board won’t fund the Arts Alliance.  Instead, the group will have to join the competitive processes of vying for one-time budget monies, something the supervisors indicated they likely would be willing to approve.

The board voted 4 to 1, with Gray against, to approve the proposed overall $163 million budget. That total is actually up about $17 million from last year because it includes the $16.8 million cost to build the Juvenile Detention Facility. However, $16 million will be provided by the state. The county’s General Fund budget is proposed to be $57.7 million, which is down about $750,000 from last year. The drop is due to the county putting approximately $1 million in one-time funding toward the future jail project in the fiscal year 2013-2014 budget.


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