Major Changes

Fiscal Year 2023-2024 Proposed Budget

Across the Board Pay Increases

During the current year, HR engaged a consultant to perform an abbreviated pay study to determine whether the County's pay plan is competitive in the local labor market. This resulted in a recommendation to increase pay rates for all current Full-time and Pay Plan Part-time positions by 8%. Temporary and Seasonal part-time positions are not included, as these positions were addressed last summer. The pay ranges will also be adjusted accordingly to keep the pay plan competitive with starting salaries. The estimated cost of pay adjustments for each fund for FY 2024 are listed below.

Additional Positions

General Fund - 31 FT and 3 PT Positions projected to cost $2,022,447 in salaries and benefits plus additional $949,986 for vehicles, equipment, uniforms, etc.

Public Safety accounts for 27 Positions:

Sheriff - 2 Court Services, 1 Patrol, 6 Jail, 2 School Resource Officers (Brooklet Elementary and Bulloch Academy)

EMS - 1 Training Officer, 6 EMT/Paramedics to staff Portal Station, 6 EMT/Paramedics to staff Register Station beginning January 1, 2024

E911 Fund - 4 FT Positions projected to cost $287,586 in salaries and benefits plus additional $6,800 for equipment, uniforms, etc.

2 Communications Officers to add workers during busiest times

2 Shift Supervisors so that there can be a supervisor on duty at all times

Airport Fund - 2 PT Positions projected to cost $46,790

Administrative employees needed to keep staff at front desk at all times

Rural Fire Fund - 1 FT Position projected to cost $80,287 plus additional $77,000 for vehicle, equipment, uniforms, etc.

Fire Inspector to assist with plan reviews and inspections

Other Highlights

  • Increased General Fund Contingency from $250,000 to $500,000
  • Added $250,000 to hire consultant to create a long-term workforce plan to guide hiring decisions related to projected growth over 5 to 10 years
  • Added $250,000 to hire consultant to create a long-term facilities plan to guide decisions related to future facilities to address growth
  • Increased risk management budget by $208,650 (30%) due to information provided by ACCG about average premium increases
    • Increased General Fund budget to include smaller equipment purchases in order to preserve SPLOST funding for larger capital projects and purchases
  • Increased many supplies and services line items based on increased spending in the current year due to inflation
  • Claims trends over the past year indicate that there could be a significant funding shortfall in the Employee Health Insurance Fund because the County has not increased premiums or otherwise altered its funding strategy for the health plan in over 10 years. For FY24 the County needs to be prepared to face a possible $2 million dollar deficit while we work through various issues with the plan. A plan is in place to make additional transfers from each fund that houses employees should this deficit occur during FY24.