Warren County Supervisors approve budget; County employees to get hourly pay increase

Published 3:56 pm Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Warren County is in good financial standing, as the Board of Supervisors approved the fiscal year 2022 budget Tuesday morning.

The Fiscal Year 2022 assessed value for the county is $543,794,975, marking an increase of $8,531,700 over the previous year. The tax levy for 2022 will be 117.77 mills.

There will be no increase in the ad valorem tax millage rate, which means Warren County taxpayers will not pay more in ad valorem taxes on their homes, automobile tags, utilities, business fixtures and equipment or rental real property, unless the assessed value of that property has increased.

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Projected revenue for FY 2022 is $41,578,491, a net increase of more than $1.48 million. $27,940,187 of the proposed revenue will be financed through the ad valorem tax levy.

“Other revenue sources for the upcoming fiscal year include gaming, the Victims of Crimes Act grant, youth detention case worker grants, fines, fees and internet sales tax,” Warren County Administrator Loretta Brantley said.

The county is projected to have expenditures of $41,578,491, an increase of $481,728. Expenditures include capital improvements to county buildings and facilities such as the golf course; improvements to tennis courts; computer system upgrades; security enhancements; lighting and energy efficiency; equipment purchases for the road department and a pay increase of 75 cents per hour for all eligible Warren County employees.

The budget also encompasses operating budgets for Warren County E-911, the Port Commission, the Warren County-Vicksburg Library, the county’s six fire districts, debt services, courts, Hinds Community College and Vicksburg Warren School District.

For every dollar spent in Warren County, 56.37 cents goes to the school system. Next in line is general county funds, which receives 29.44 cents on the dollar, followed by roads and bridges at 7.12 cents.

Hinds Community College receives 4.56 cents for every dollar spent, debt service receives 1.35 cents and the library receives 1.16 cents.

Also during Tuesday’s meeting, David Bridgers, CPA, presented the Sept. 30, 2020 audit report for Warren County.

“We issued two opinions on this report. The first opinion is on your financial statements,” Bridgers said. “You got the best opinion you could get on that.

“The second opinion was on the overall internal control of the county. There were a few findings, but in general, that was in pretty good shape, too.”

Bridgers went on to explain that there was no evidence of fraud in the budget, and according to the balance sheet of governmental funds, Warren County was a “1o out of 10” in terms of the county’s ability to pay its bills and manage debts.

“You can meet your current obligations about 30 times over,” he said. “That is an indication that this county is in a great financial position. It’s an indication that you as a board have done a good job in the way you have been managing your money.”

Sheriff Martin Pace, after denying a county supplement to his state-mandated pay as the elected sheriff and not receiving a pay increase since 2014, was also approved to receive a salary increase of $10,000 as stated in Section 24-3-25(10) of the Mississippi Code of 1972.