County council receives further guidance from financial advisor
Pulaski County Council members received further guidance from Jeff Peters as they headed into budget hearings on Monday and Tuesday.
Peters spoke with the council before they began talking with different department heads about the 2020 budgets. Peters, of Peters Municipal Consultants, was hired last year to advise the county on how more tax revenue can be brought into the county and where all the spending was occurring. What Peters has advised the county is that if changes are not made to expenditures and revenue the county will be in a financial snafu by 2022. If changes are not made the county could see a deficit of $2.7 million over the next couple of years.
Peters presented a timeline to the council and used the 2016 budget as an example that the council should use in regards to an expenditure structure. He suggested that the department heads could use those expenditure totals as they construct their 2020 budget.
Along with breaking down the numbers Peters emphasized that the county will need to decide on any special changes to the local income taxes and submit those changes to the state for review. He said the county will need to explain to the state that the county doesn’t have the kind of income tax pool to compensate for expenditures.
Councilwoman Kathi Thompson said as the council talks with the county department heads, they will need to have conversations about cutting the budgets to the 2016 numbers.