Warren County Supervisors approve budget for FY 23

Published 4:41 pm Friday, September 9, 2022

The Warren County Board of Supervisors budget hearing was held on Tuesday at the county courthouse. The proposed budget was presented and approved by District Supervisors for the fiscal year ending on Sept. 30, 2023.

Loretta Brantley, the County Administrator, announced the figures for the new budget compared with the current fiscal year.

She stated that the assessed taxable value of the county is $590,179,296, compared to the $543,794,975 in assessed value from FY 2022. Revenue for the new FY was projected to be $45,998,607, up from $41,578,491 in the previous year. Those figures also represent the projected budget expenditures for the respective Fiscal Years.

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Brantley listed items the budget is set to pay for.

“The expenditures for the upcoming fiscal year include capital improvements for county buildings and facilities, startup expenses for a new jail, information technology monetization and upgrades, security enhancement of the facilities of the county, lighting and energy efficiency, (and) equipment purchases for the road department so they can continue to do the great work that they do for Warren County,” she said.

Part of the budget also set the millage rate for the county. It will remain the same as it was last year at 117.77 mills.

“You will not pay any more ad valorem taxes than you currently do on your home, your tags, utilities, business fixtures, equipment or rental property unless the assessed value of your home or their property has increased for the fiscal year 2023,” she said.

The budget approval also included an increase in minimum pay for county workers.

“There will be proposed, an increase of $1 per hour for all eligible Warren County employees,” Brantley said. “And effective Oct. 1, the minimum rate-per-hour for the county will be $11.”

The budget was passed four to one. Shawn Jackson, District Three Supervisor, was the nay vote. She said she voted no because she did not agree with how about $4 million in county revenue increases was budgeted.

“This is where I think the money could have gone. We could have shared that increased value of the mill with our residents,” Jackson said. “There are counties across the U.S. in this time, in recession, where they are lowering the millage rate. They are sharing with our residents. People are hurting, we could have reduced our millage rate and given our taxpayers a break.”

Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace was also at the meeting to ask the Board of Supervisors to approve a resolution authorizing a one-time payment to law enforcement officers of $1,000.

“This is using state money to compensate every law enforcement officer that worked through the pandemic with a one-time $1,000 payment,” Pace said. “Cops can’t work from home. We’re still going to people’s houses and having direct contact with them. These officers, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, were out there serving the people of this community right at the height (of the COVID pandemic).”

The payment is the result of the state legislature and Governor Tate Reeves passing the Mississippi Law Enforcement and Firefighters Premium Pay Program act, which required signatures from the Board for money to be distributed.

Another item on the agenda that the Supervisors approved was the sale of about 24 acres of land at the Ceres Industrial Complex. The property, located across the street from Love’s on exit 15 of Interstate 20, will be used for a travel center to be built by Flowers Travel Center, LLC.

Meetings for the Warren County Board of Supervisors are held on the first and third Monday of each month. They take place on the third floor of the courthouse at 9 a.m. and are open to the public.