Another fund loan, different reason

The Fayette County Board approved a budget amendment on Tuesday that includes another $250,000 transfer from the capital improvement fund, but not for the same reason as in the past.
While the board has loaned money from the capital improvement fund in the past to meet payroll, this time the loan is to, among other things, take care of workers’ compensation expenses.
Board chairman Steve Knebel explained that the loan is needed because the county is being required to pay an additional $77,000 for workers’ compensation, bringing the county’s annual payment for last year up to $324,000.
Knebel told board members that he will be doing research to determine whether the county can ease budget issues by making quarterly payments instead of one lump sum payment.
“That would be a wonderful, wonderful benefit,” he said about having the ability to spread the payment out over a year’s time.
In addition to taking care of that payment, the transfer will also help to pay other county bills, if necessary, Knebel said.
The board’s action, he later explained, allows the transfer of up to $250,000, meaning that Treasurer Rose Hoover will use only what is needed out of that total to meet the county’s obligations.
The budget amendment also includes bumping up the county’s E911 coordinator, Kevin Jenne, up from part-time to full-time, with the county’s 911 fund, not its general fund, covering the salary increase.
Knebel said the E911 board decided to give Jenne additional hours to allow him to finish up the addressing changes needed for the 911 system.
He said that when voters approved the funding for a 911 system, the plan was to have the system up and running in five years. That five-year deadline was in November of last year.
Knebel said that the 911 board does not want Fayette County to be like other counties, some of which have take 10 or 11 years to get the system going.
“That is not acceptable,” Knebel said. After the meeting, he estimated that more than 75 percent of the addressing work has been completed.
The budget amendment was approved 8-3, with Wade Wilhour, Jake Harris and Jeff Beckman voting against it. After the vote, Beckman said that when he voted, he was of the understanding that the action meant that all of the $250,000 was being used, as opposed to using only as much as is needed.
Also at the meeting:
• The board approved a local agency agreement for federal participation with the Illinois Department of Transportation for the replacement of a bridge just west of St. Peter on County Road 2100East.
• The board approved the appropriation of local funds for the replacement of a bridge just west of St. Peter on County Road 2100West. The project is being funded with $40,000 in township bridge funds and $10,000 in federal aid match funds.
• The board approved the purchase of a new scanner for the county clerk and recorder’s office, as well as the software needed for that scanner.
The cost of the scanner is $1,495, and the software cost is $1,200.
County Clerk Vicky Conder said the current scanner can no longer be used, and that her staff is having to manually enter information instead of scanning documents. That means that a job that should take about an hour takes about two days.

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