The new county budget includes three percent pay increases for county employees, additional School Resource Officers and a new ambulance station at Georgetown, County Mayor Jim Coppinger said Tuesday.
He also said the county is working on programs to cut down the number of prisoners at the jail and workhouse, including a pretrial detention program and mental health services.
Total spending requests total $765,542,000 - an increase of $49 million over the current budget. However, County Mayor Coppinger said he expects the spending to be whittled down to match revenue to avoid a property tax increase. The county is projecting $5.4 million in new revenue from the property tax and the sales tax.
On the employee raises, he said those making under $50,000 would get a raise of at least $1,500.
It will be the fifth straight year of pay increases for county workers. Prior to that employees got just one raise in five years.
The average salary of a county full-time employee is $43,358.
Cost of the county employee raises is $3,546,000.
Sheriff Jim Hammond is seeking 34 new positions in the jail, 12 in patrol, four in the courts and three in criminal investigation.
Overall, there are requests for 107 new positions. There currently are 1,770 full-time county employees.
County Mayor Coppinger said there are no health insurance increases, saying there had not been many large claims during the year. He said another factor was employee use of the wellness center.
The self-insurance fund for employee health benefits is at $20 million.
The overall county general fund is above $90 million. At one time it was well above $100 million, but a large amount was taken out for the Volkswagen project.