Fiscal 2019 DeKalb County budget public hearing Wednesday

October 2, 2018

SYCAMORE – DeKalb County residents will get a chance to ask questions or voice concerns about the county’s proposed fiscal 2019 budget during a public hearing Wednesday night.

The DeKalb County Board previously voted to place the proposed fiscal 2019 budget on file for public inspection during its Sept. 19 meeting. Despite a few recent fiscal anomalies and other contentious county-related issues, county officials said, the DeKalb County fiscal 2019 budget is looking like it will be a balanced one.

DeKalb County Administrator Gary Hanson said there couldn’t be a lot added to the budget, so the county doesn’t have to dip into its emergency reserves. He said it’s pretty much a status quo budget, and he hasn’t heard from constituents about it as of yet.

“A lot of services that people depend on are being maintained,” Hanson said. “So I didn’t expect a lot of comment.”

Additional personnel in different county departments were requested to be added to the budget, but they didn’t make the cut. That included additional public defenders and a jail correction’s deputy who would be the prison rape elimination area coordinator, according to Sept. 5 county finance committee documents.

Hanson had said the biggest thing that the county faced in the past year was losing sales tax revenue from the inability to sell airline fuel within the county. He said that in the past, American Airlines and United Airlines would buy their airline fuel from Sycamore, and the sales tax from those purchases benefited the city and county, but laws changed to not allow that, and revenues from airline fuel now need to be spent at airports.

County officials said the goal is to pass the fiscal 2019 budget by the end of the month while still giving the public enough time to review it. That’s different than in past years, because the county wanted to ensure the passage of a new wind energy ordinance in November before terms end for some current board members.

The finance committee meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday at the DeKalb County Administration Building Conference Room East, 110 E. Sycamore St.

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