A Pulaski County Council member says a lack of information is hurting the council’s ability to manage the county’s finances. During Monday’s meeting, Kathi Thompson said the council needs monthly updates on how the county’s expenditures compare to its budget.Continue reading
One of the local officials leaving office as 2018 comes to an end is longtime Pulaski Circuit Court Judge Michael Shurn. Over the past month, he’s been updating the county council and commissioners on the transition process.Continue reading
Pulaski County’s General Election ended with some incumbents unseated in tight races. Democrat Linda Powers lost her District 3 County Council seat to Republican Brian Young by a margin of 56-to-44 percent. Winamac Town Council Member Dan Vanaman lost his at-large seat by just five votes, coming behind fellow Republican Alvin Parish and Democratic challenger Dave Schambers.
The Pulaski County Council almost forgot to adopt the 2019 budget Monday. The approval finally came after more than four hours of occasionally contentious discussions but relatively little action on several budget-related items.
A bond resolution to fund improvements to the Monterey-Tippecanoe Township Public Library was tabled by the Pulaski County Council Monday. The measure would let the library borrow up to $475,000, although it’s hoped the actual amount will end up being closer to $385,000.
Confusion remains over Pulaski County’s salary matrix, in spite of a new set of written guidelines. Last month, the county council adopted a written set of “Matrix Rules” to help department heads interpret the pay structure that’s already in place. But during last week’s meeting, Auditor Laura Wheeler said the matrix itself would have to be updated to comply with the guidelines, and presented a proposed update to the salary ordinance.
Confusion about checks paid to two Pulaski County Highway Department employees led to a heated debate during last week’s county council meeting. The first had to do with $2,500 paid to Secretary Jessica Rausch for her duties as asset management coordinator. Last month, council members agreed to transfer that amount into the department’s asset management services line item. Auditor Laura Wheeler then apparently paid the money to Rausch as part of her paycheck. She asked council members last week to adjust the salary ordinance accordingly.
Pulaski County officials are looking at reducing the speed limit on County Road 250 North. Last week, resident Greg Hilderbrandt asked the county council and commissioners to lower the speed limit from 55 to 45 miles per hour.
Pulaski County Human Services will not be getting a funding boost from the county. Executive Director Jacki Frain asked the county council last week for another $10,000, after the organization was only budgeted to get $30,000 in county funding this year. While that’s the same amount that Human Services got last year, Frain said it’s about $15,000 less than what it traditionally got in the past.
A tight race for circuit court judge was one of the big attractions in Pulaski County’s Primary Election Tuesday. Mary Welker narrowly beat Tim Murray for the Republican Party nomination, with 50.6 percent of the vote over Murray’s 49.4 percent. That was a margin of just 22 votes.
Pulaski County employees can expect more consistency and documentation on the county’s salary policies. That was the consensus reached during a joint session of the county council and commissioners Wednesday on the county’s salary matrix. The system is designed to give county employees a set schedule when it comes to pay raises.
The races are set for May’s primary elections. In Starke County, one hotly-contested office is county clerk. Current auditor Kay Chaffins is challenging incumbent Vicki Cooley for the Democratic party nomination. The winner would presumably face Republican Bernadette Welter-Manuel in November’s general election.
Pulaski County Sheriff Jeff Richwine is seeking pay raises for some of his employees. During last week’s county council meeting, he asked if part-time dispatcher Susan Hemphill could be bumped up to a higher pay level. “She was a full-time dispatcher, left, and then came back as a part-time person,” Richwine explained. Continue reading
2018 may have just started, but some Pulaski County officials are already preparing for shortfalls in this year’s budgets. Maintenance Supervisor Jeff Johnston told the county council last week there isn’t enough money for part-time help. “I guess the numbers were taken off of last year, when I only had two part-time people, and I’ve got four,” he said. “So I’ve only got enough for two of my part-time people. In order to pay them the rest of this year, that additional is $42,360.”
The Pulaski County Council met in special session Wednesday to cut $338,000 from its 2018 budget proposal. As part of that effort, county employees who were set to get a two-percent raise would now only get a one-percent increase, based on Wednesday’s discussion. That’s expected to save the county about $45,000 in next year’s budget.
The Pulaski County Council continues working on the county’s salary matrix. Recently, a question has come up about whether pay raises based on longevity should take effect in January or on the actual anniversary date of when that employee was hired.
Pulaski County Human Services will have to wait a bit longer before it gets more money from the county. The county council decided Monday to hold off on an additional appropriation of $15,000 until council members have a chance to review the county’s budget. Continue reading