WARSAW — The 2020 proposed budget report was reviewed at the Oakwood Cemetery Board of Regents meeting held Thursday, July 11. The total proposed budget is $762,861, a 7 percent increase over the 2019 total budget.
Items listed on the budget report include salaries, employee benefits, office supplies, insurance, utility services, rentals and repair and maintenance of equipment.
Oakwood Sexton Hal Heagy told board members that Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer has looked over the budget. Increases for the 2020 proposed budget report fall in the categories of salary/wages, benefits and equipment, Heagy said.
“The recommendation was three percent,” said Heagy. “As you see, it’s a little bit more than that.”
The reason for that, Heagy explained, is that every department is fighting to find and keep part-time workers.
“I have a great part-time crew and wanted to jump from $11 an hour to $14 an hour. Every job out there is $11 an hour almost,” said Heagy. “I have a school teacher who has been with me nine years and another one I believe four or five. I have a young man who has come back the second year for half a day and I have Stu who works for me.”
“It’s Thursday and the cemetery is all mowed and probably 85 percent weed-whacked, plus we did six funerals and we’ve done some other stuff,” Heagy said.
He said the front field has been completely mowed four times.
“My guys have literally went out and weed-whacked a ton of it that we couldn’t get into in that muck,” said Heagy, stating that the area was too wet to mow.
“I was gone. I had taken a Thursday and Friday off…we couldn’t get into the larger section. I stuck the mower twice and they had to come and pull me out prior. They decided it looked bad and I didn’t tell them…they went out and weed-whacked it,” said Heagy. “That just shows you the crew I have. I appreciate every one of them.”
Heagy said equipment costs are up due to the anticipated purchase of a dump truck in 2020, along with changing out a skid loader and purchasing a stand-up mower.
Oakwood Board Vice-President Max Mock was not in attendance at the meeting. Members in attendance approved the proposed 2020 budget report, with Heagy reminding them that they will still need Mock’s approval as well.
Heagy said they are currently dealing with a water leak at the cemetery. He said a representative from the water company informed him at the end of June that he had used 9,000 gallons of water since the first of June.
“There’s no mapping on the water system out here,” said Heagy. “In 12 years I’ve got three zones figured out.”
Heagy said one leak was located Thursday and repaired, which decreased the severity of the leak. They will continue to look into this.
- A new road will be put in at the cemetery next year.
- Fence repair at the cemetery should be completed this week.
- The next regular meeting will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 1.