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Budget is promising at midyear
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Kevin Tanner delivered some good news to the Dawson County commission last week when he presented the 2010 midyear budget update.


“We’re in better shape than we anticipated,” said Tanner, the county manager.


The original $23.7 million budget approved for 2010 authorized the use of more than $469,000 from the county’s reserves.


Tanner said county staff made a series of cuts during the first two quarters of 2010 that lowered spending by 8 percent and did not require any money to be taken from the fund balance.


“Due to the dedicated staff, department heads and elected officials, we are continuing to be able to provide the level of service that our citizens have come to expect, even in this downturn economy,” Tanner said.


Cuts were made to personnel/employee benefits, contract services, road and fuel supplies and lowering debt services on loans.


Tanner said the county would need to continue reductions of 8 percent to stay balanced for the year.


Commission Chair Mike Berg commended the county’s finance and budget managers for their work.


“I’m really pleased with Christina (Palacios), Cindy (Campbell) and Kevin (Tanner) that in this very difficult time they are able to work with a budget, so we didn’t have to take money out of the fund balance,” Berg said.


Tanner also addressed tax revenue received in his report, saying revenue from 2010 has held steady compared to 2009.


He then cautioned that property tax revenue likely will drop as the new year approaches.


“We hope that will be offset by an uptick in the economy in sales tax, but it’s something we’ll have to monitor closely,” Tanner said. “We’ll be prepared to adjust if we need to.”