Monday, December 14, 2009

Adams County Commissioners Adopt Budget for 2010

The Adams County Board of Commissioners unanimously adopted its 2010 budget in public hearing on Dec. 9, 2009. The $484.7 million budget represents a 13.7 percent increase over the original 2009 budget due to the ongoing Government Center project, increased food assistance payments and several road and bridge projects. Excluding these three areas, the overall budget is down by 2 percent.

“Adopting an efficient budget is one of the most important responsibilities we have as commissioners,” said Chairman Larry W. Pace. “We worked hard to ensure that the final budget is efficient and effective to fund key issues in 2010.”

The approved 2010 budget includes a reduction of 21.5 vacant positions compared to the approved 2009 budget. These positions were either eliminated from the personnel count or budgeted at zero dollars and will remain vacant for 2010.

“We are fortunate that Adams County will not be implementing layoffs or furloughs in 2010,” said Commissioner Alice J. Nichol. “While we won’t be filling numerous vacant positions, we are committed to maintaining the level of service our residents have come to know and expect from Adams County.”

Significant budgeted items include $35 million to finish construction of the new Government Center and $26 million in road and bridge projects. Road and bridge projects include nearly $5.1 million in regular maintenance of county roads, streets and bridges, $10 million in additional funding for the Pecos Street Grade Separation Project from 52nd Avenue to I-76 and nearly $9.4 million for widening Washington Street. Nearly $1.8 million in drainage projects are budgeted out of the general fund for 2010. Additionally, over $7 million for potential open space projects is budgeted from the Open Space Projects Fund should such opportunities occur.

“Funding for the new Government Center was made possible by county voters who had the foresight to extend an important county sales tax in 2006,” said Commissioner W. R. “Skip” Fischer. “This one-half of one percent sales tax was extended for 20 years to fund critical transportation projects, the new Government Center, the Justice Center expansion and a pre-trial holding facility.”

In accordance with state statutes, the budget is adopted in December for the upcoming calendar year. The county's 2010 budget is made up of 20 separate funds that pay for numerous public services. The county will also use voter-approved sales tax revenues for other transportation and open space projects. Property tax revenues are expected to decrease by nearly .5 percent compared to 2009, the first property tax revenue decline since 1994. Budget books will be available online after the first of the year at

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