Members of the Board of Supervisors are set to review a mid-year budget status report at Tuesday morning’s board meeting. The Board unanimously approved the 2018-2019 $2.78 billion last August.
The county received $341 million in revenue for the general fund, according to the mid-year report. That comes out to roughly 43 percent of the $799 million county leaders budgetted to receive for the fund.
The document also reveals the county has thus far spent just over $360 million of the general fund, or 43 percent of the amount budgeted to spend.
“We have been working to follow our deficit mitigation plan,” said David Couch, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, at last Wednesday’s state of the county address. There, he spoke highly of the county’s four-year plan to eliminate the deficit by end of 2020.
“Our deficit will be completely mitigated,” he said. This year’s budget appears to be on course, as the general fund has $171.4 million in reserves.
There’s no real red flags here,” said Michael Turnipseed, President of the Kern Taxpayers Association. While he noted most of the budget is on a fiscally stable track, he pointed out the Kern County Fire Fund is spending more than it’s taking in.
“The biggest problem the county is facing is the $7.5 million deficit in the fire fund budget, and that is going to be the biggest challenge they face.” he said, adding county leaders “…have not made any major steps towards addressing that for the first six months, so I think the county has to be looking at how it will address the $7.5 million deficit in the fire budget.”
The report only accounts for spending through Dec. 31, the halfway point of the fiscal year. Supervisors are set to review the report on Tuesday at 9 a.m. at the board chambers.