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BC E-911 Board approves budget

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

REEDThe Barry County E-911 Emergency Services Board approved a $1,147,861.98 budget at its quarterly meeting on June 28.

Pat Leighter, E-911 director, estimated that the 2010-11 fiscal year revenues will be around $909,050. This includes around $900,000 in sales tax revenue.

Barry County Emergency Services received $864,419.48 in sales tax revenue during the 2009-10 fiscal year and $909,178.33 during the 2008-09 fiscal year.

The E-911 Board also has $350,000 in a Money Market account, $50,000 in a business interest account and $424,850 in uncommitted funds through a lease purchase agreement with Wells Fargo.

According to the approved budget, the emergency services board's largest 2010-11 fiscal year expense will be payroll, which is estimated at $387,000. This is a $17,000 increase over the 2009-10 fiscal year payroll expense.

Leighter reported that four probationary employees would be receiving a 50-cent-per-hour raise, which will cost $4,160. She also factored in a 2.5 percent cost-of-living increase for all employees, which will cost $12,468.

The 2010-11 fiscal year budget includes no building construction expenses or consulting fees but does include a $50,000 expense for contract services.

"This category contains attorney's fees, which rose significantly this year due to the lawsuit," said Leighter. "At the end of this fiscal year, the attorney's fees were 641 percent more than last year."

In 2008-09, the board spent $5,992 for contract services. That amount increased to $38,452.79 last year.

"I do not know how much longer the lawsuit is going to take, but we have allowed $50,000 for the upcoming fiscal year," said Leighter.

The 2010-11 fiscal year operating budget also includes a $60,000 expenditure for facilities and equipment. The funding will be used to pay for repairs to existing equipment and the Smith 2Way Radio improvement project, which placed repeaters and other equipment in the northern, central and southern parts of the county.

The approved budget also includes a $24,000 expenditure for sign installation and a $10,000 expenditure for sign making supplies.

"With the initial installation complete, we are now replacing signs that have been vandalized or damaged," said Leighter. "We are currently averaging 50 to 65 signs and poles a month with most of the losses occurring in the north part of the county and west to the Newton County line."

The 2010-11 fiscal year budget also allows for a $190,661.98 loan payment to Wells Fargo on the lease purchase agreement.

The board also reviewed the director's report, which included an update on the radio infrastructure improvement project.

Leighter reported that repeaters and voice alarms have been installed at Sugar Camp near Roaring River and on the feed mill at George's. Equipment has also been delivered to the KAMO tower west of Cassville and placement has been approved.

"(Smith 2Way is) presently scheduling the antenna installation with the power company," said Leighter. "Mike Phillips (GIS technician) went to the Sugar Camp tower site last week. There is a propane generator on-site as well as a propane tank.

"The last log book entry for the generator is 2008," said Leighter. "I would like to send a technician to the site to give us an estimate on bringing it back on-line. It would definitely help lower the ISO rating for communities served by the south tower, including Central Crossing, Washburn, Seligman and Eagle Rock-Golden-Mano."

Leighter reported that three seats on the Barry County Emergency Services Board will be filled in November. The first day to file is July 13 and the last day to file is Aug. 17.

Four-year terms held by Leonard Witt and Mick Epperly will expire in November. The two-year seat currently held by David Dalton, who was appointed to the board last year, will also be up for re-election.

The director's report also included call totals for April and May. In April, the Barry County E-911 Operations Center handled 9,215 calls, and in May, the center handled 10,593.

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