Knox City Council Discusses 2012 Budget

Knox City Council #2
Back Row: Mayor Rick Chambers, Ed Blue, Clerk-Treasurer Jeff Houston, Greg Matt and Attorney David Matsey. Front Row: Linda Berndt, Jeff Berg and Ron Parker

“Even though money is tight, I still think we can grant a 2% salary increase.”

That was told to the Knox City Council this week by Knox City Clerk-Treasurer, Jeff Houston. The two percent increase recommended for all employees and officials was passed unanimously by the Council on the first reading of the salary ordinance.

The State Board of Accounts has completed its audit of the 2012 budget.

“The audit has been completed and I think it came out pretty good,” said Houston. “We had our exit conference, but we don’t have the report back yet. I think he said it might be five or six weeks before it comes out officially.”

Houston said this was a Federal audit.

“This was a Federal audit because there was over a half-million dollars that we handled in grant money and now the agency that handles the grant, OCRA, will be coming in and making sure that the grant is closed out correctly.”

The total budget estimate for the City of Knox in 2012 is $3,112,071. Even though the assessed value in the city has gone down, Houston said the budget figure is up because the riverboat-casino budget estimate and economic development income tax credit estimate have been added to the figures this year. The inclusion of these figures was recommended by the auditor of the State Board of Accounts.

Houston said officials at the Department of Local Government Finance now must approve the budget and they might demand some cuts. Houston, Mayor Rick Chambers and Council President Ed Blue sat in on the exit conference.