York County Council officially adopted the budget for fiscal year 2020, which begins on July 1, and is less than last year’s budget.
The new budget is $371 million, down $99 million from the 2018-2019s budget of $470 million.
“I’m very pleased with this budget,” county manager Bill Shanahan said in a statement. “The budget is balanced and focuses on the 2019 strategic goals council has set forth, as well as it positions the county to be even stronger financially in the future.”
The new budget includes a 2.0 mill increase – an increase in property tax rates – for the county’s general fund for the sheriff’s office, county spokesperson Trish Startup said in a statement. The money will be set aside for capital facility funding for the sheriff’s office.
The 2.0 mill increase means people who own a home worth $193,000 would owe an additional $15.44 of gross property tax.
The value of a mill is projected to increase to $1.34 million, a 5.7% increase, for the entire county, Startup said.
Assistant county manager Kevin Madden said the increase is expected to bring in $2.68 million.
Madden said the tax increase is part of a plan to make sure the county doesn’t need to issue new debt in the future.
A county plan to pay off the general obligation debt in 2024 was a key initiative of the fiscal year 2019 budget, and a 2018 county statement estimated the plan would “instantly save taxpayers approximately $9 million.”
The new budget also approves a 2.5% merit-based raise for county employees.
Four new firefighter positions were approved in the new budget.
“This is the first time in the history of York County that the county itself has hired firefighters,” Madden said.
The new firefighter positions would work across individual fire district lines to strengthen county fire coverage, he said.
Other new jobs added under the budget include:
- Assistant public defender for juvenile court
- Part-time associate judge
- Court specialist
- Election support technician
- Part-time clerk in tax collection
- Permit center manager
- Office manager
- Part-time veterans benefit support specialist
- Part-time park attendant
- Part-time sheriff’s office evidence control tech
- Part-time sheriff’s office record management clerk
- Eight sheriff’s office deputy positions
- Sergeant for the training unit
- Assistant solicitor
- Part-time solicitor’s office investigator
- Economic development research analyst
- Solid waste collection mechanic assistant
- Solid waste disposal part-time billing clerk
Some positions will be changing under the new budget, including:
- A Part-time clerk will be reclassified as full-time
- A court specialist will be reclassified as full-time
- A full-time administrative assistant will be reclassified as part-time
- An AP clerk will be reclassified to an internal auditor
- A Part-time sheriff’s office records management clerk will be reclassified as full-time
- A senior solicitor will be reclassified as assistant solicitor
The budget was approved by the county council after a third reading of the proposal Monday. The new budget year starts July 1.