UPDATE: 9:05 AM
When Janet Creighton and Tom Bernabei (about a year ago) became commissioners, they instituted a monthly meeting with the Stark County auditor and treasurer in an "open to the public" work session context so that they can keep abreast of county finances.
Mostly, the news has not been good.
However, at today's (January 23, 2012) meeting, there was some good news.
Auditor Alan Harold shared with commissioners that he had determined that he was willing to transfer most of accumulated (more than 5 years old) "overpaid" real property and personal property taxes. How much will that be? About $1.1 million!
And the news is not only good news for the commissioners, it is also good news for all county departments of government that get funded from the county general fund.
Watch and hear Auditor Harold (the Stark County General Fund 2012 Certificate of Resources) and Treasurer Zumbar (interest income) layout total county revenues for this budget year of $47.7 million compared to $49.9 million last year.
The "new" money (the $1.1 in overpaid taxes) coupled with nearly $4.9 million in 2011 carryover could mean that the projected 23.1% (across all of Stark County government) may be reduced to 15%.
Here is a copy of the 2011/2012 (estimate) comparison on revenues compiled by Auditor Harold.
After Auditor Harold and Treasurer Zumbar made their presentations, the commissioners then reflected on the fact that the $1.1 million (overpaid taxes) in unexpected money would lessen the cuts for some departments. Harold offered several scenarios. Here is a video of the discussion.
As readers of the SCPR will recall, a couple days ago The Report published a video of Stark County Prosecutor John Ferrero sort of giving an ultimatum to the commissioners: (paraphrase)"either take me back to 2011 budgetary levels or I will force your hands by having the courts appoint special prosecutors for our cases, which will cost the general fund much more money in the long run."
Yours truly checked with two of the commissioners after Monday's session (Bernabei and Ferguson)and both said that while they sympathized with Ferrero and that they are open to reconsidering the amount of his department's cuts, they believed that he would not be fully restored to his 2011 level of funding.
Here is the video of Bernabei and Ferguson.
The remaining question: Will Ferrero stick to his bottom line or does he blink?