County approves $102 million budget for 2019

Budget includes an increase of $1 million in revenues over 2018

PRESS RELEASE Nov. 20, 2018

GARFIELD COUNTY, CO – The Garfield County Board of County Commissioners has approved a fiscally conservative $102 million proposed budget for 2019 that includes a decrease in expenditures of $3 million from 2018. The budget features an increase in revenues of $1 million over 2018, mostly due to an increase in property tax collections.

The 2019 budget’s expenditures come to just under $102 million, with $89.6 million in projected revenues. Proposed capital projects and discretionary items – primarily grants to local nonprofits – require an overall drawdown of $12.3 million, but total fund balances are projected at a healthy $93.4 million at year’s end.

A balanced operations budget includes a directive for efficiencies and savings to justify any cost increases by all departments to offset those requests.

“We have a proven track record, in terms of our elected officials and directors, over the many years that we’ve demonstrated fiscal responsibility, and we’re continuing that with our 2019 proposed budget,” said County Manager Kevin Batchelder.

The county’s proposed personnel budget is $47 million, which includes 3.1 percent merit raises and a 10 percent increase in health care costs. The county is adding just one employee over 2018 numbers – a Garfield County Sheriff’s Office student resource officer for District 16 schools. The additional position was not part of the annual budget process, and was approved by the BOCC earlier this year as an amendment to the 2018 adopted budget. The school district and Town of Parachute have agreed to each reimburse the county for one third of the cost of the position.

The $8.1 million capital budget includes $2.5 million for infrastructure; $1.9 million for heavy equipment purchases; $1.4 million in building improvements; $1.2 million for replacement vehicles; and $1 million for computer equipment and software.

The budget was approved unanimously, 3-0.

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