Nine non-profit agencies made budget presentations to the Kosciusko County Council last night. Most of them projected increases to their budgets as federal and state funds decrease, adding additional stress and reductions on the services they provide. Budget increases for 2014 across the board totaled $70,915.
Among the nine non-profits present last night were Kosciusko Community Fair 4-H Council, Kosciusko Economic Development Corp., Cardinal Services, Home Health Care, Kosciusko Historical Society, Beaman Home, Council on Aging, Animal Welfare League and Bowen Center. Council members also had access to the St. Joe River Basin’s budget, though there was no presentation.
Rick Paczkowski, executive director of Home Health Care, stated he did not envy the councilmen with so many non-profits in need of additional funds, noting they were going to have to make hard decisions in regards fund dispersal.
However, among talks of cuts and service reductions, several non-profits shared their highlights, which included renovations and expansions, increased traffic and operational improvements.
Among them, Bowen Center is expanding its Jefferson Street location while Beaman Home is 54 percent closer toward starting its new building, which would bring all of its services under one roof.
KEDCO shared there had been strong progress with new companies like Trupointe coming into the county. In total $24 million in new wages have come into the county.
They also noted a grant had been awarded allowing Ivy Tech and WorkOne to identify and talk with under-employed individuals or those who did not finish high school. The grant would then help pay for these individuals’ remediation to enable them to learn the skill sets needed to be a machinist — a position that is currently in high demand nationwide.
In other council news:
- Ten abatements were approved. Those were for Louis Dreyfus, Maple Leaf Farms, Midwest Rake Company, R.R. Donnelley, Custom Engineered Wheels, Precision Medical Technologies, NG Instruments and three for Biomet and Subsidiaries.
- A budget reductions and then additional appropriation of the reduction was approved for the county commissioners.
- An additional appropriation was approved for the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department to split into three parts — supplies, ammunition and flares, and training/seminars — to comply with a State Board of Accounts request. The department also received a transfer of funds to its repairs and maintenance fund to cover repairs to a squad car.
- The highway department received $200,000 to chip and seal 20 miles of road. With new legislature, additional funding will be available in August, however, it would come to late for chip and seal to be applied, requiring the additional appropriation.
Next council meeting will occur at 7 p.m. Aug. 8.