County Commission discusses current, upcoming-year revenue projections

By STEPHANIE BRUMFIELD / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – The Shelby County Commission discussed current- and upcoming-year revenue projections at its Aug. 12 meeting, where Chief Financial Officer Butch Burbage said the numbers show evidence of  “good news” for the county.

Although the county is projecting a decrease in non-earmarked, general fund revenues from 2011-2012 to 2012-2013–from about $44.1 million to the year-end projected $42.9 million–Burbage pointed to specific areas of revenue that are seeing slight increases, as well as projected increases from the current and upcoming fiscal years.

Overall, general fund revenues are projected to increase to about $44.6 million for 2013-2014, and property tax revenues are expected to increase from about $12 million in 2012-2013 to $12.4 million in 2013-2014.

“It’s a little bit of an increase, but we’re not going down anymore,” Burbage said. “So that’s a good sign.

The really good news comes with sales and use taxes, according to Burbage. The county projected to earn about $12.2 million during 2012-2013, an increase from 2011-2012, but is actually expected to earn about $500,000 more than projected. For 2013-2014, the county is projecting about $12.9 in revenue from sales and use taxes.

“It’s good news or us,” Burbage said. “We see a lot of economic activity out there…. It shows that our economic strength is beginning to pick up…. It’s good news in a sense that we’re not going down anymore.”

In other news:

  • The Shelby County Board of Education will offer $80,000 of assistance to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office for security measures taken during the past school year, according to a contract received by County Manager Alex Dudchock this past week. Dudchock said county officials did not participate in the calculations, and the money will be credited back to the Sheriff’s Office to help towards expenses for the current fiscal year ending Sept. 30.
  • Efforts to bring the University of Montevallo campus to downtown Montevallo are well underway with two buildings opening in August. The University of Montevallo Bookstore opened on Main Street Aug. 1, and the University of Montevallo on Main opening ceremony is scheduled for Aug. 23 at 10 a.m. Dudchock said more than 4,000 students are expected to make trips through the facility on a weekly basis once school starts.
  • County Engineer Randy Cole mentioned the federal funds Shelby County received from ATRIP funding. Cole said Shelby County received the second-most funds of all counties in the state, and he said it wouldn’t have been possible without the foresight of the County Commission setting aside match monies in advance. Dudchock said the county would not have been able to apply for the grant without the match money already set aside and ready to use.