GRUNDY COUNTY MAYOR
We hope that this article finds you well. It is an honor and privilege to serve you, the citizens of Grundy County as your County Mayor. As in the past, it is an honor to give you a report on the status of Grundy County’s finances, economic development, and services. In this article, we will elaborate on Grundy County’s finances and overall well-being.
In 2014, we had no short list of issues to address. The financial stability of the county, however, was at the top of the list. A budget had not been passed for the 2014-2015 fiscal year and we only had a couple weeks to have one adopted. The threat of the current jail closing with an estimated cost of $1.8 – $2.4 million to house out inmates at other facilities was present. The Affordable Healthcare Act was looming with an estimated additional cost of $800,000 to provide insurance or face fines. The Solid Waste Fund was losing approximately $200,000 per year while the property owners had a tax increase of 19.5 percent. During the third week of September 2014, Grundy County went in the negative approximately $14,000 in the General Fund.
As we reflect back to these issues, I am happy to say that we ended the last fiscal year with approximately $2.4 million in fund balance in the General Fund. The current jail facility, with the offset costs that have been implemented, has brought no increased burden to the budget or the Grundy County citizens. We opted out of the state insurance system and hired a broker to customize our insurance plans. This brought a great savings to Grundy County and eliminated the possibility of fines by not offering affordable healthcare coverage to its employees. The Grundy County High School loan was refinanced which brought approximately $200,000 in savings. We are happy to announce that the Grundy County High School loan will be paid off in the fiscal year 2020-2021.
We have pursued every avenue possible in grant funding for Grundy County and have been successful in this endeavor. We have had over $2 million in grant monies awarded with an additional $350,000 applied for. We have also applied for unclaimed property as well as liquidated properties this year for the first time since 2012. The Solid Waste Fund is projected and budgeted to be in the black and growing. We are also pursuing recycling and solid waste disposal reduction costs that could potentially reduce this cost by 50 percent. Alternative avenues of cost savings are vitally important to our success.
It is our continual goal to be good stewards of Grundy County’s finances and pursue every option necessary to keep those finances healthy. We feel that the protection of taxpayers’ dollars is crucial to the future success of Grundy County. The Grundy County Mayor’s Office is continually driven by the mission statement “How will the actions and decisions we make today affect Grundy County tomorrow?” Our office is your office and we invite you to share your concerns and ideas to make Grundy County a better place tomorrow than today. I sincerely thank you for the honor of serving you, the citizens of Grundy County. May God richly bless you, your family, and Grundy County.