Article by W. Clay Crook-
The Henderson County Commission met on Thursday evening, May 20, 2021 to discuss the upcoming budget with Henderson County Mayor Eddie Bray and Finance Director Lee Wilkinson.
Mayor Bray said that the budget under discussion for the new year is fiscally conservative, and closely follows the current budget, with consideration for the maintenance of effort (MOE) requirements.
There were no cost of living raises recommended by the state for elected county officials, and so there are no cost of living raises reflected for elected officials in the budget, but there were some small adjustments made to reflect the increased cost of health insurance.
Mayor Bray said that there had not been a raise for county employees during his term and hopes that something can be worked out. An alternative to a cost of living raise might be through a bonus or a longevity package, and it may be possible to fund that through some of the one time COVID-19 funding. Half of those funds, about $2.7 million, have been received, but the Comptroller has recommended that those funds remain separate until the final spending guidelines and requirements have been worked out. A suggestion was made that a final decision on the best method for employee compensation might come in July or August, and could be handled with a budget amendment.
There is a June 30th deadline for the budget, and Mayor Bray anticipates several meetings in June to work through the…
For complete coverage, see the May 26th edition of The Lexington Progress.