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Putnam Commissioners Weigh In On Monday Night’s Budget Vote

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Putnam Commissioners Weigh In On Monday Night’s Budget Vote

Putnam County Commissioners set to decide on the final budget at their meeting Monday, with a proposed property tax increase of just over 18 cents.

Commissioners not on the budget committee say their decision voting decisions are based on several components the recommendations of the committee, the needs of the citizens, and the need to fund services. 7th District Commissioner A.J. Donadio:

“We’re looking at different aspects of it to see what we individually think is appropriate when balancing the need of the property owner and the taxpayer,” Donadio said. “Because that’s the number one job of the county commissioner.”

7th District Commissioner Grover Bennett Jr. said a property tax increase is not ideal, but in the face of large projects and inflation woes, something must be done.

“But we are pulling almost $8 million out of our excess fund balance, two different funds to offset that much of a property tax increase,” Bennett said. “So yes we’re still looking at 18/18.5 cents but we are pulling $8 million in excess out, which I think is the right thing.”

8th District Commissioner Danny Holmes said he would have voted no on earlier property tax proposals, with the highest at almost 50 cents, but feels better about the current proposal.

“I guarantee you that we would be very happy to walk out Monday night with no property tax increase,” Holmes said. “But when I look at everything that’s been presented before me, and when (Budget) Chairman Ben Rodgers looks at me and says ‘Danny, this is the best we can do,’ then I go with that.”

The budget includes 91 new employees, the majority of which will serve the expanded County Justice Center. It also includes a marketplace adjustment to bring county salaries more in line with similar government and private sector jobs.


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