“While we are seeing the beginning of an economic recovery in DeKalb County, I believe that we had to hold the line on taxes this year,” said May.
“I am proud we were able to reach a consensus on a fiscally sound and responsible budget, which keeps our government services running efficiently, while keeping tight controls on our expenditures,” said Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton, chair of the finance, audit and budget committee.
Included in this mid-year budget are items with an emphasis on restoring the public’s faith in government: $195,000 is included in the District Attorney’s budget to create a Public Integrity Unit, with a full year’s commitment of more than $700,000 in 2015, along with $97,000 that is included in the ethics board’s budget for staffing a chief integrity officer unit, with a full year’s commitment of more than $290,000, and the transfer of three auditing positions to the board of commissioners to staff the internal audit section.
Also included in the mid-year budget is a 3 percent cost of living adjustment for county employees, an additional $1.4 million towards various information technology upgrades and an additional $1.2 million for Grady Hospital.
“While integrity is the topic of the day, there are many other parts of this county that cannot and will not be neglected,” said May.
“At the end of the day, I’m happy to say we still have a reserve of at least $36 million. We still need to improve the reserve, but we are on the right path,” said Commissioner Larry Johnson. “I am also proud we were able to add an additional $200,000 for our police officers to assist in summertime patrols.”
“And we are doing all of this without increasing the county’s tax rate,” said May.