By Julie Johansen
During the Emery County Commission meeting on Tuesday, a motion to close the meeting and open two public hearings was entertained and approved. The hearing was to receive public comment concerning opening and amending the 2021 fiscal year budgets for the Emery County General Fund, Special Revenue Fund and Capital Projects Fund as well as the Local Building Authority and the Castle Valley Special Service District. The second hearing was to discuss the proposed fiscal year 2022 budgets for the same entities.
Emery County Clerk Brenda Tuttle explained that the amendments for the 2021 budgets were because the revenues were higher than expected. This was due to an increase in property taxes as well as CARES Act funds received by the county. These funds needed to be distributed in the different areas.
The budgets discussed for 2022 included a 6% cost of living increase for all full-time county employees, including reserve officers. This year’s increase is more than the 3% in the past year. The commissioners felt this was necessary because of the inflation across the board in other areas. These funds will be taken from solar, cities contribution, transient room taxes and the housing of state inmates in the Emery County Jail.
Both the amended budget for 2021 and the budgets for 2022 were approved unanimously by the commissioners. There were no public comments or questions during the hearings.