County adopts interim budget

The county adopted a $71 million interim operating budget last week as county officials prepare the budget for the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1.

The interim budgets keeps taxes at the same level as the last budget, according to Mary Embleton, county budget officer, for simplicity and to establish a baselines for revenues in the preliminary budget for the upcoming year.

Commissioner Joe Briggs said during the June 22 meeting that “this budget will change. Don’t be surprised to see major changes in this budget.”

Briggs said the county is awaiting guidance on using its share of COVID relief funds.

County to increase pay for elected officials, non-union employees, deputies

The timeline for the preliminary budget depends on when the county receives its certified taxable values from the Montana Department of Revenue, which are sent by the first Monday of August, as required by state law, Embleton said.

The notice of public hearing will be published accordingly to allow the public the opportunity to view the preliminary budget, and that could happen as soon as Aug. 31,” Embleton said.

Final adoption of the budget is tentatively scheduled for early September.

County approves budget with $12 annual tax increase; will set mills for other districts on Sept. 8 including special levy to recoup Calumet protested taxes [2020]

Until the county receives those values from DoR, they can’t make a determination on whether there will be a tax increase in the upcoming budget, Embleton said.

The interim budget does not include pay increases that were recommended by the county’s compensation board earlier this month or increases from collective bargaining agreements.