Community, Government, Latest News, Preston County

Preston County budget passed, awaiting state approval

The Preston County Commission approved its tentative budget for fiscal year 2023 at its regular meeting Tuesday.

“This is a tentative approval, as you remember,” County Administrator Kathy Mace said. “It’s actually we submit this to the auditor’s office and they get final approval from the state.”

The total budgeted expenditures, including coal severance tax, is $9,390,419. Tax revenue increased by $286,545 compared to fiscal year 2022. 

Mace said the budgeting process went very well.

Commission President Samantha Stone said it was a tough budget and it seems like there’s never enough to fund everything their hearts’ desires.

“However, we are paying our bills. And with, I guess the only thing I know to do is have a prayer about it because if everything comes in as we are anticipating, there will be some funding that we can look at or additional things when carryover comes in,” Stone said. “So that’s always good because it has not always been the case.”

There used to be enough excess to fund expenses outside of direct operations, such as building maintenance and fund office holders, and then add the carryover on top of that, Commissioner Dave Price said. 

“Now, it’s we go to the office holders — and they’ve been great about it — and  they just hold to what they absolutely have to have,” Price said. “And we basically come up with enough money to do that and that’s all.”

Taxes, unless property was improved, did not go up, Price said. He moved to approve the tentative budget and Commissioner Don Smith seconded the motion. The commissioners unanimously approved it.

Price said things to note about the budget include that 19% goes toward law enforcement, court security, and process servers; 18% is for the commission, which covers the buildings and office holders; and 10% is regional jail costs — almost a million dollars.

“That’s just 10% of the general fund,” Smith said. … “The rest of it comes from coal severance, so it is actually more than that.”

TWEET @DominionPostWV