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Calaveras Budget, Waste, Public Works On Slate

San Andreas, CA — As it formally adopts Calaveras County’s next fiscal year’s budget at tomorrow’s regular meeting, the board of supervisors looks to approve 20 new county positions and capital purchases of over $4.2 million.

As previously reported, the recommended budget hearings two weeks ago went as quick and well as they have in years, according to Chief Administrative Officer Shirley Ryan. The final budget of $121,533,593 includes total appropriations of $4,209,949. Planned purchases include $1,500,000 for IT infrastructure; $450,000 for a vital statistic data system for the Recorder’s Office; two patrol vehicles for the Sheriff’s Department under a three-year lease/purchase for $42,000, as well as two command vehicles at $115,000. Transit fund allocations of $995,603 will cover purchases of an intercity bus, five Class C buses, two mini vans and $314,538 in bus stop improvements. Also budgeted in the integrated waste management fund is $135,000 for an air curtain wood burner to handle wood and green waste.

The 20 new positions that have been added are scattered through various departments. Among them are an IT network specialist manager; a paralegal for the district attorney’s office; a resident school deputy sheriff and deputy probation officer; a planner and a building department plan checker; an animal shelter assistant; five new behavioral health positions, including three case managers; and five Calworks employees that include a veterans’ service representative, employment and training worker, social worker, transportation officer and staff services specialist.

In Other Actions

The board expects to maintain the county’s $150 solid waste parcel fee for next fiscal year, which provides about $4.4 million in funding for the countywide waste management system. Staff, however, will be reviewing the ordinance and current policies. Areas of concern involve cost recovery for processing materials as well as the handling and transport of tires and yard waste that have a small gate fee; bulky and large items that currently do not; and policies of accepting wastes from lot clearing or illegal dump cleanups from unimproved parcels with no solid waste fee.

Also on the agenda, the board will consider extending an agreement with Tiger Lines LLC through next June to haul chipped wood and yard waste from the county’s remote annex sites. Staff recommends to increase the agreement’s not to exceed amount by $75,000 for a maximum total of $175,650.86. The county is looking into ways to reduce costs in this area, including through the abovementioned purchase of an air curtain burner, which expects to reduce the need for hauling away materials by 80 percent. As previously reported, with extended drought conditions and increased need for clearing due to fire danger county facilities, particularly the Red Hill Annex, have been stretched beyond their limits.

The county’s Engineering/Capital Improvement Program Group is also slated to make a presentation on the state of local public works. Responsible for delivering all road-related capital projects, the group currently has 23 in the works. Chief among them are improvements at 12/26 intersection in Valley Springs and the replacement of Rail Road Flat Road Bridge, both of which anticipate completion within this fiscal year.

Following a closed session at 8 a.m., the meeting will open to the public at 9 a.m. in the board chambers (891 Mountain Ranch Road, San Andreas).