The first draft of the proposed FY16 budget sees an increase of $11,998,261 to $59,722,158, which the Board of Commissioners will start hammering back down in the coming weeks.
The projected revenue shortfall at present comes out to about $12 million.
Some of the largest proposed increases are in the Sheriff’s office, the Jail, the Roads Department, the Superior Court, and the Fire Department, a large chunk of which will be offset by the Fire Fund.
The budget includes ten personnel items, including the addition of several full and part time staff.
Commissioner John Douglas expressed skepticism the county would be able to hire new personnel and give raises promised to current employees.
The proposed budget was distributed at Wednesday night’s budget meeting, where the board also found that the county’s insurance broker, Gary Massey, was able to renegotiate employee health plans with Cigna so that neither co-pay nor deductibles will change next year.