Vance Commissioners Provide Details of Recent Budget Session

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The following information was provided to WIZS News on June 5, 2019.  It has been re-typed for display here.

To see the raw information that was provided, please scroll to the bottom of this post.  You will be able to see the original, scanned-in document which contains some graphs that are much easier to see and understand than attempting to read it all in a strictly text format.

  1. Epsom & Drewry Fire Districts. Epsom and Drewry receive funding from two counties. Vance provides each $67,500 annually plus MDT Service and financial review/audit reimbursement, Franklin County provided $140,500 to Epsom in FY18-19 (FY19-20 proposed at $122,000 plus $12,000 for rent for EMS co-location) and Warren County provided $97,000 to Drewry. The recommended budget includes providing funding for 1 part-time position for each of these border departments providing up to $43,663 in additional annual funding. A review of neighboring counties indicates each VFD is not provided equal funding. Below are a few statistics comparing the portions of their districts:

Epsom VFD – Vance County Portion of District Relative to Franklin County:

Property Values – 30%

Fire Calls – 32%

Road Miles – 26%

Structures – 31%

FY19 Funding – 36%

Mgr. Recom. FY20 Funding – 48%

* Note: 32% of Fire Calls in Vance County with Vance County providing 48% of their funding relative to Franklin County

Drewry VFD – Vance County Portion of District Relative to Warren County Property Values:

Property Values – 61%

Fire Calls – 36%

Road Miles – 57%

Structures – 58%

FY19 Funding – 42%

Mgr. Recom. FY20 Funding – 54%

* Note: 36% of Fire Calls in Vance County with Vance County providing 54% of their funding relative to Warren County

  1. Rescue Squad Funding. By eliminating funding to the Rescue Squad and moving rescue services to the County Fire Department, the county general fund would save approximately $190,000 per year. If eliminated, staff would recommend putting $100,000 of that into equipment in year 1. Currently, the county provides the Vance County Rescue Squad $100,000 per year in annual funding plus funding for a financial review/audit ($1,375 for review or up to $2,500 for audit). The county also covers monthly costs for Verizon service for Mobile Data Terminals of approximately $1,400 per year and the proposed budget includes an additional $87,326 for two part-time positions.

What services does Rescue provide that we would not be able to do in house? By contract, the rescue squad provides Heavy Rescue, Vehicle Extrication, High Angle, and Water Rescue as outlined by the NC Association of Rescue and EMS. Rescue services are commonly being transitioned to volunteer and paid fire departments across the state. The county fire department can achieve the certifications and handle Heavy Rescue, Vehicle Extrication and High Angle Rescue in the short term (additional equipment needed), but they do not have certifications or equipment necessary for water rescue. Some of the existing volunteer fire departments provide extrication services.

Costs for Water Rescue Services. The staff has confirmed the county could receive water rescue services for $20,000 a year. Overall spending for all rescue services including water rescue averages $47,000 a year for the surrounding counties vs. $190,000 for the upcoming year in Vance County. 

How many people does the Rescue Squad regularly put on a scene? A request was provided to the rescue squad chief on 5/22/2019 for records indicating average personnel on scene. To date, no data has been provided.

  1. Budget Adjustments as of June 3, 2019

Recreation – Increase from City of Henderson for resurfacing of tennis courts at Fox Pond – $175,000 total increase with $78,750 increase in county funding.

Broadband – Reduction of $45,000 due to successful GREAT grant award.

Sheriff’s Office – Increased uniform line item $2,500 to fully fund the requested amount for uniforms. Added 3rd new deputy and 1 new lieutenant position – $116,870

Jail/Detention Center – Added 2 detention officer positions – $90,918

Arts Council – Added $800 to fully fund the requested amount of $2,000.

Radios Purchase for VFDs – Recommended Budget includes radios for county departments and rescue squad from County General Fund and for volunteer fire departments from the fire tax fund. Staff recommends keeping the purchase of radios for the VFDs in the fire tax fund consistent with its purpose to provide much-needed equipment and facilities for the departments in the rural parts of the county. If the board chooses to fund the VFD radios from the General Fund balance, it would require an additional $187,522 or $451,410 over three years to be taken from the general fund balance.

  1. Manager Recommendations to Balance Budget Following Board Adjustments. Attached is a listing of revenue as well as recurring and one-time capital expenditure options considered to balance the budget. Of those options, below is the manager’s recommendation for making up the $251,255 shortfall created by FY20 budget adjustments made thus far:

➢ Revenue – Property Tax revenue increase $102,918

➢ Revenue – Additional Fund Balance for Recreation capital project $ 57,411

➢ Expenditure – Cut 1 new MDT from VC Fire Department $ 3,600

➢ Expenditure – Cut 2 part-time positions at Rescue Squad $ 87,326

      Total: $251,255

➢ Granville County – Fire Departments provide rescue services. County pays $20,000/year to Granville County Search and Recovery for water rescue. (Population = 59,557; $62.5 million County budget)

➢ Warren County – Fire Departments provide rescue services and water rescue. Warrenton Rural and Norlina provide Rescue Mutual Aid. County pays $56,000/year to Warren County Rescue for ambulance services near Lake Gaston. (Population = 19,883; $30.8 million County budget)

➢ Franklin County – Fire Departments do vehicle extrication and specialized rescue; Partner with Louisburg for confined space and water rescue and Youngsville Rescue for water rescue. County pays $38,400 to Youngsville Rescue which also provides ambulance service (Population = 66,168; $81.6 million County budget)

➢ Person County – County recently increased funding from $5,000 to $75,000 annually to Roxboro-Person County Rescue (Population = 39,370; $60.8 million County budget)

➢ Vance County – County provides $102,775 annually to Vance County Rescue Squad and is proposing additional $87,326 for 2 part-time positions. No ambulance service is provided by rescue squad (Population = 44,211; $48.3 million county budget).

(Below are the scans of the original documents.)

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