County Administrator outlines priorities for next year’s budget

  • Apr 14, 2015

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (April 14, 2015) –Local healthcare funding, Manatee County Animal Services and expanded public transit opportunities will all be prioritized in next year’s spending plan, County Administrator Ed Hunzeker proposed before County Commissioners today.

 Hunzeker’s list of five funding priorities was received well by the County Commission today during the first in a series of public workshops that mark the onset of a summer budget season that will shape the County’s spending plan for next year.

 

Hunzeker first reviewed three priorities the Board has already committed to for next year: a new public safety radio system, expanding Manatee County Area Transit routes to offset local traffic problems and paying for needed upgrades at Manatee County Animal Services. Funding local healthcare needs and addressing employee compensation were also on Hunzeker’s list of five issues that will be funded first in next year’s budget.

 

He noted that uncertainty in the state budget regarding Medicaid expenses will have a large impact on next year’s County budget, but that Manatee leaders are committed to addressing healthcare needs in the community.

 

Hunzeker also noted that the community has grown substantially over the past 10 years, but the County workforce has not – an issue the Board will have to address if the County is to continue providing a high-quality of life for its residents.

 

“As the population has grown, our employee totals have not; we’re doing more with less and that stress is felt in the workforce,” Hunzeker said. “We need to be aware of the demands in the community and how they relate to demands on County staff.”

 

No budget numbers were presented today, since property values for next year haven’t yet been determined. Hunzeker will present more specifics when rolling out a recommended budget plan to the Commission on Thursday, May 28 at 1:30 p.m. in the County Commission Chambers. The Property Appraiser’s Office will certify taxable values on July 1.

 

Commissioners largely agreed with Hunzeker’s budget goals, but said they will want to know more about how to fund local road improvements and how to pay for mental health funding and drug courts when more details are presented this summer.

 

 Other workshops and meetings are scheduled as follows:

 

  • Fund Summary Review on Wed., June 3, 1:30 – 5 p.m., in the Manatee Room on the Fourth Floor of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W. This presentation will provide a summary of the county’s major financial funds. The county’s financial structure is made up of approximately 150 funds, each of which is a self-balancing entity, and is created for legal compliance, accountability requirements, or both.
  • Decision Unit Review on Mon., June 8, 1:30 – 5 p.m., in the Manatee Room on the Fourth Floor of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W.
  • Decision Unit Review on Tues., June 9, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the Manatee Room on the Fourth Floor of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W.
  • Constitutional Officers’ budget review on Wed., June 10, 1:30 – 5 p.m., in the First Floor Chambers of Manatee County Administration Building. Commissioners will review proposed budgets for Manatee Sheriff’s Office, Manatee Property Appraiser’s Office, the Supervisor of Elections’ Office, Manatee County Tax Collector’s Office and the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller’s Office.

 

  • Capital Improvement Program (CIP) on Thurs., June 11, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the Manatee Room on the Fourth Floor of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W.

 

  • Budget public hearing on Thurs., June 11, 6 p.m., in the First Floor Chambers of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W.

 

  • Special Meeting on Budget Reconciliation and adoption of a tentative millage rate on Thurs., July 30, 1:30 - 5 p.m., First Floor Chambers of the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W.

 

The County will also host two public hearings in September. Those dates have not yet been decided.

 

As they’re available, proposed budget materials are being posted online at www.mymanatee.org/budget

 

For more information on Manatee County Government, visit online at www.mymanatee.org or call (941) 748-4501. You can also follow us on Facebook atwww.facebook.com/manatee.county.fl and on Twitter, @ManateeGov.