As the fiscal year comes to a close on June 30, the Trinity County Board of Supervisors last week adopted a preliminary budget for the upcoming 2020/21 fiscal year as required by state law to continue to function until a final budget is adopted by Oct. 2.

The preliminary budget amount is $130,544,298 including all reserves, enterprise funds and dependent special districts. The 2019/20 budget totaled $131,310,953 which was an increase of more than 11 percent from the prior year, largely attributed to one-time jail construction funding from the state. The 2020/21 preliminary budget also anticipates more than $11.7 million in jail construction.

All departments have submitted their requested budgets for the new year and County Administrative Officer Richard Kuhns said that as in years past, the requests for general fund contributions exceed the anticipated revenue by several million dollars.

“We’re out about $18 million overall, but about $4.5 million in the general fund,” he said, adding the amounts include fully funding the county’s contribution toward post-employment benefits for retirees, a full roster of corrections officers in the new jail and an additional sheriff’s deputy, but not additional funding for the jail or other staffing requests.

Over the next two months, Kuhns said “we’ll be working real hard to close the gap. General fund is what we spend the most time on. Non-general fund revenues are whatever those departments receive and have to live with. In September we will come forth with a recommended budget.”

The Board of Supervisors’ final budget hearings are scheduled for Sept. 9-11.

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