Board of Commissioners approves FY18 budget
June 19, 2017-- At its June 19 meeting, the Cabarrus County Board of Commissioners held a public hearing on and unanimously (5-0) adopted the FY18 budget. The balanced budget includes a General Fund Budget $246,996,127. The grand total of all funds within the FY18 budget, including the General Fund, Cabarrus Arena and Events Center Fund, Landfill Fund, 911 Emergency Telephone Fund and Health Insurance Fund is $262,765,262. The Board of Commissioners adopted an ad valorem tax rate of $0.70, the same rate as first adopted with the FY13 budget and reapproved for each year since. “We are at a critical point where growth makes it harder to meet expectations, yet this budget gets it done without a tax increase,” said Board of Commissioners Chair Steve Morris. “The budget is responsive to our needs, especially education and public safety, and keeps us on track to responsibly invest in infrastructure.” The County’s budget centers around seven priority issues identified by the Board of Commissioners at its January retreat: planning, growth, and economic development; communication and transparency; enhanced programs and excellent public service; public safety; transportation; education; and mental health. Highlights of the FY18 budget:
- The budget continues to fund collaborative efforts between the County and majority of the municipalities, including joint land use plans that meet future needs of our citizens and responsibly guide government infrastructure investment.
- The Board of Commissioners will also build upon established channels and explore new ways to communicate with the public frequently and transparently. The County has resourcefully planned several major communication initiatives to coincide, including a branding campaign, website redesign, and launch of a livestream version of the County’s PEG television channel. Website users will benefit from visual consistency, enhanced experiences, and increased reach of programming. The intent is to attract economic development, promote viewing of Board of Commissioners meetings, and help successfully deliver information about programs and services offered by the County.
- Net new positions—34 positions (26 full-time and 8 part-time)
- Human Services (13 full-time, 1 part-time)
- Active Living and Parks (2 full-time, 2 part-time)
- Human Resources (1)
- County Manager’s Office (1)
- Communications and Outreach (1)
- Infrastructure and Asset Management (2)
- Construction standards (3)
- Sheriff (2)
- Emergency Management (1)
- EMS (5 part-time)
- The County continues to find ways to meet the demand of keeping a strong workforce in a strengthening economy—especially in several high-need departments, including human services, public safety and facilities maintenance. The budget includes funding to implement the recommendations of the Comprehensive Salary Study, completed during FY17, and offer prospective employees market-competitive compensation packages.
- The Board of Commissioners and staff continue to work with the United States and North Carolina departments of transportation, and our municipalities to advocate for additional roads and improvement of existing roads. Tracking these projects ensures that congestion, safety, and mobility issues that exist in our county are at the forefront when those decision-making bodies meet and plan future projects.
- The County will take on additional debt service for the construction of the new high school on Weddington Road, Performance Learning Center, a warehouse and the downtown Concord parking deck.
- The Board of Commissioners has created a Mental Health Advisory Board and staff is investigating strategies that the County hopes to implement during FY18. This has become a countywide initiative with participation from representatives of public, private, and non-profit agencies. Through the Stepping Up program, the Board of Commissioners will move forward with efforts to improve detection of and identify appropriate management strategies for mental health concerns among the County’s detention center population.
Through budget work sessions, the Board of Commissioners identified specific changes they wanted incorporated in the budget. Among the changes is an increase in the Concord Rural, Jackson Park, Kannapolis Rural and Flowes Store volunteer fire district taxes of $0.059, $0.042, $0.045 and $0.01, respectively. The FY18 fire taxes will be $0.10 for Concord Rural, $0.10 for Jackson Park, $0.08 for Kannapolis Rural and $0.06 for Flowes Store. The Board of Commissioners sets the fire tax; however, only property owners within the respective fire district are required to pay.