Council To Hold Public Hearing On Budget

The Dillon County Council will hold a public hearing on the 2017-2018 Dillon County budget on Wednesday, August 23, at 4:00 p.m. at the Dillon County Council Chambers located at 109 South Third Avenue, Dillon.
A public notice regarding the hearing states:
“The purpose of this hearing is to obtain written and oral comments from the public concerning the ordinance establishing the 2017-2018 County Budgets.
The current proposed County millage information for operation is as follows:
County of Dillon Operating Budget(s)
2016-2017 total revenues & expenditures (Fund 10) $18,346,748
2017-2018 projected revenues & expenditures (Fund 10) $18,954,847
Estimated percentage of change in General Operation budgets between current Fiscal Year and proposed budget (Fund 10) + 3%
Millage for 2017-2018 General Operating Budget (Fund 10) 115
Estimated millage for 2017-18 General Operating Budget 115
115 mills will generate $6,689,000 (Fund 10)
Millage for 2017-2018 bond indebtedness 20.5
20.5 mills will generate $1,073,928 (Fund 20)
Any millage rate increase will be subject to the requirements of Section 6-1-320 of the South Carolina Code.
Note – Capital Projects (Fund 45): $4,644,151 is appropriated with non-operating revenue and expenditures for capital acquisitions and projects for Fiscal Year 2016-2017.
Note – Capital Projects (Fund 45): $8,194,983 is appropriated with non-operating revenue and expenditures for capital acquisitions and projects for Fiscal Year 2017-2018.
All County fees(s) are a part of the County Budget Ordinance. A copy of the County Budget Ordinance can be obtained from the County Administrator’s Office. There will be changes to County Fees in the County Budget for Fiscal Year 2017-2018 concerning Solid Waste Box Fees.
At the time and place fixed for said public hearing, all interested persons who appear will be given an opportunity to express their views for or against this ordinance. Persons requiring special arrangements to attend this meeting due to physical disability should contact the County Administrator’s office at 843-774-1401 at least 24 hours in advance.”
At the July 26 meeting of the Dillon County Council, the council passed An Ordinance to Provide Supplemental Budget Appropriations for County Purposes in the County of Dillon for the Fiscal Year Beginning July 1, 2017 and Ending June 30, 2018 and Adopt and Implement Rates and Fees, and for Other Tax Purposes and County Appropriation Purposes and to Establish the Tax Millage to Provide for the Budget.
WHEREAS, Dillon County Council intends to ensure Dillon County meets its funding requirements established by law;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Council properly enacted a budget for Fiscal Year 2017-2018;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Treasurer Jamie Estes filed a lawsuit alleging Dillon County Budget for 2017-2018 was improperly adopted and improperly withheld funds from Dillon County Board of Education and Northeastern Technical College;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Council strenuously disagrees with the allegations of Treasurer Estes’ Complaint;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Treasurer Estes threatened to stop disbursing funds after July 14, 2017, thereby essentially stopping all Dillon County government operations;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Council sought to maintain stability and continue daily operations of all government activities; thereby, it instructed Administrator Berry to file a Petition for Writ of Mandamus ordering the Treasurer to perform her job and disburse funds;
WHEREAS, Judge Michael Nettles issued a Writ of Mandamus ordering the Treasurer to perform her job and fulfill all responsibilities by disbursing funds per the 2017-2018 budget approved by Dillon County Council;
WHEREAS, Judge Nettles ordered the funds previously appropriated for the Dillon County Board of Education from the Local Option Sales Tax and the two percent millage for the Northeastern Technical College be held in escrow by the County Treasurer at the same level of funding for Fiscal Year 2016-2017 and do so until a final ruling is made by the court;
WHEREAS, Dillon County Council does not admit its Budget for 2017-2018 was adopted improperly; however, it adopts this supplemental Budget to ensure consistency with the ruling of Judge Nettles.
The motion to pass the first reading of this ordinance was made by Councilman Robbie Coward and seconded by Councilman Jack Scott. The vote was 5-2 with Coward, J. Scott, Chairman Archie Scott, Councilman T.F. “Buzzy” Finklea, Jr., and Councilman James “Hoghead” Campbell voting for the motion and Councilman Harold Moody and Councilman Stevie Grice voting against it.

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