The Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, in and for Gilchrist County, Florida, convened in an emergency meeting on August 25, 1998, at 5:00 p.m., in the County Commissioner's Meeting Room, located in the Gilchrist County Courthouse, Trenton, Florida, with the following members present to-wit:

Jimmie Sheffield, Chair

Wilbur Bush

Randy Durden

Sue B. Suggs

Fred Wilkerson

Others in attendance were: Joseph W. Gilliam, Clerk of Circuit Court, Sam Ferguson, Finance Director, Susan Bryant, Supervisor of Elections, Sheriff David Turner, Ron McQueen, EMA/County Coordinator, and Sherree Pitzarell, Deputy Clerk.

Mr. Gilliam stated that during the budget workshop held on 8-20-98, the re-cap sheet on the proposed budget showed the budget out of balance by $402,164. Today's updated figures, which reflect a $30,000 cut from the Clerk's budget, $5600 from the Development Authority, $10,000 from the Gilchrist County Recreation Authority, $62,060 from animal control, one bailiff's position at $30,995 and one dispatch position at $23,749, brings the total amount out of balance to $239,760. After looking at the calendar for the upcoming meetings, the next scheduled meeting will be the same meeting as the tentative budget adoption hearing, therefore, the Clerk's Office needs guidance in order to balance the budget prior to the tentative budget hearing.

Today, the Sheriff re-submitted his budget request, which he reduced by approximately $130,000. This reduction is not enough to bring the budget into balance. Mr. Gilliam explained that he took each constitutional officer's and each BoCC department's budget requests and reduced it to a five percent increase, if their request was more than that. In doing this, a total of $341,852 was cut from the total budget requests. This would allow $102,092 more in revenues than in expenditures, which could be placed in reserve. This would increase the reserve to $236,120.

Commissioner Durden stated that he felt that the Comprehensive Planning funding level should be raised to $20,000 as they discussed with the Planning Council last year.

Mr. Gilliam stated that the Tax Collector can operate with a five percent increase if he is able to keep his carry-over from this fiscal year.

If comprehensive planning and protective inspections are budgeted at the requested levels, the reserve would be reduced to around $199,000.

According to Mr. Gilliam, budgeting at a five percent increase, may not be enough funding for the Sheriff to give his employees raises at the approved state level, because of the number of employees he currently has.

Mr. Gilliam stated that health insurance premiums may also reduce the projected reserve.

Commissioner Wilkerson asked the Sheriff if he has a method for purchasing new vehicles. Sheriff Turner stated that he likes to replace cars after three years. Last year he purchased seven new cars, some of which were purchased with grant funds.

Commissioner Durden stated that it would take approximately $20,000 above the 5% increase to fund the raises for the Sheriff's Department. This would reduce the reserve to about $179,000. Last year's reserve was about $100,000. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to fund departments and constitutional officers at a 5% overall increase, and fund protective inspections and comprehensive planning at the original higher funding level. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved.

Commissioner Suggs made a motion to allow the Tax Collector to keep his carry-over. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush. There followed discussion among Board members about whether or not to refund carry-overs for other constitutional officers. It is not known at this time what those amounts will be. Commissioner Suggs withdrew her motion.

Commissioner Durden made a motion to adjourn. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved.