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E-911 Board reviews budget

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Barry County E-911 Emergency Services Board reviewed the 2010-11 fiscal year budget at its regularly scheduled meeting on Dec. 20. Barry County E-911 is currently operating on a $1,138,561.98 budget.

The emergency services board operates on a one-quarter-cent sales tax that voters approved in 2005.

E-911 currently has $855,772.75 in checking, savings, escrow and loan accounts. Mike Phillips, E-911 director, estimates that the board will receive an additional $429,300 in sales tax revenue, interest and other income by June of 2011.

Expenses, which include legal services, employee insurance, facility and equipment fees, maintenance agreements, loan repayments and payroll, are estimated at $572,600 for the remainder of the fiscal year. The largest expense is the payroll, which will total $510,000 with employee taxes.

According to Phillips' December director's report, the emergency services board finance committee has researched options for reducing operating expenses if sales tax revenues remain stagnant or the lawsuit between Barry County and the City of Monett is not resolved quickly.

"We spoke about hiring someone for maintenance of the building along with eliminating Cintas," said Phillips. "We also spoke about laying off two personnel. This would reduce payroll expenses by $45,000 to $50,000 yearly.

"My concern was having adequate staffing to meet the workload," said Phillips. "After creating some schedules, this would be an option. This would require some restructuring of current schedules, (changing) 10 hour days to eight hour days. We would reduce staff by a combination of performance, experience and seniority."

The finance committee also discussed the emergency services board's building maintenance contract with Cintas, which expires in November of 2012. The board can buy out of the contract at 50 percent of the contract cost.

Phillips is searching for an individual who is interested in cleaning the building. The job would require around three to four hours per week. An advertisement will be published in local newspapers in the near future.

"There will be little savings since we are only able to reduce cleaning crew and not Cintas," said Phillips. "We have reduced Cintas services to $145 per month from $250 per month."

Phillips and the finance committee has also discussed the option of combining street sign installation services with maintenance services to reduce costs. More research will be required to determine storage and startup costs associated with the change. The committee elected to postpone discussion of this issue until a later date.

In other business, the Barry County E-911 Emergency Services Board:

* Received an update on equipment.

* Heard that Phillips met with the Barry County Commission to discuss options for notifying citizens of address changes when private roads are adopted into the county maintenance system.

* Received information on audits conducted by CPA Group and the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

* Heard that several Barry County fire chiefs are interested in receiving text messages with information on emergency calls. This service will cost around $110 to implement.

* Received information on meetings held with Monett 911. The two agencies are discussing ways to share resources and work together. Quarterly director meetings will begin in the near future.

* Reviewed the quarterly statistics report, which showed that the Barry County E-911 Operations Center handled 9,391 calls in September, 9,555 calls in October and 8,689 calls in November. The majority of the calls were dispatched to the Barry County Sheriff's office.

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