CHARLESTON -- Law enforcement in Mississippi County will need to increase its revenue or cut expenses to make ends meet, according to the county's budget officer.
County Clerk Junior DeLay presented county commissioners with an overview of the county's major funds for 2006 during the regular County Commission meeting Thursday.
DeLay noted every county fund ended with more money than they began with.
He pointed out that the general revenue fund, however, transferred a total of over $517,000 to other funds.
Of that, about $473,000 was transferred to the law enforcement fund "which is about $100,000 more than was transferred in 2005," DeLay said.
Expenses for this fund were actually down about $100,000 but revenue was about $200,000 below what was projected.
With the increase in health insurance premiums, "they're either going to have to increase their revenue or cut their expenditures," DeLay said.
He advised the sheriff should use a conservative revenue forecast for 2007 and budget accordingly.
One of the places law enforcement fell short in revenue was from the boarding of federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement prisoners. The 2006 budget had projected $830,000 from ICE but only got $761,000.
The juvenile detention center also brought in $45,000 less than expected.
Presiding Commissioner Jim Blumenberg noted the law enforcement sales tax actually brought in about $27,000 more than projected.
Vending and inmate phones were lower both in expenditures and revenues but still managed to turn a profit of about $48,000 which is about the same as in 2005.
Commissioners said this could have been achieved by making purchases at a lower price and selling at a higher price than previous years. DeLay suggested there may have been a carry-over of inventory from the previous year.
"Medical is way down," DeLay noted, as $103,400 was budgeted for the jail's medical expenses but only $58,000 was spent. He said the drop in medical was in hospital and doctor costs.
Blumenberg suggested asking Sheriff Keith Moore and Chief Deputy Charlie Marcum to attend the next County Commission meeting to discuss the 2007 budget.
Employee raises, Blumenberg said, are probably out of the question this year for the sheriff's department.
Commissioner Homer Oliver said the sheriff's department will need to cut $55,000 in expenses just to keep the general revenue transfer from increasing.
DeLay said there are two costs the county had in 2006 that will not be in the 2007 budget: last year the county purchased a new mainframe computer and had to spend about $35,000 to hold the general election.