Darren Doyle, story:
Edmonson County Fiscal Court met on Monday, December 27, 2021 via virtual meeting. Both the Sheriff and County Clerk's annual budget for 2022 were approved by magistrates.
Sheriff Shane Doyle had originally proposed adding another full time deputy to his staff for 2022 that would also take care of animal control duties; however, Judge Executive Wil Cannon didn't feel like that would be the best option, as a deputy would prefer regular law enforcement duties instead of sharing them with animal control responsibilities. Instead, additional funding was found by County Treasurer Tammi Willhite that could be added to the sheriff's budget that would allow funding for another full time deputy without any impact to the tax payer. Animal control duties would still be handled separately by the Judge Executive's Office, and Sheriff Doyle said the new approved budget amount will allow him to add another full time deputy to his staff.
After a motion by Magistrate Mark Meeks and a second by Magistrate Charlie Tarter, magistrates unanimously voted to accept the sheriff's new budget (with exception of Magistrate James Vincent, who was absent) in the amount of $768,000, (budget figures were provided to the Edmonson Voice by the Judge Executive's Office) which is approximately 25% funded from the county's general fund. The County Clerk's budget is funded through county tax funds but doesn't require additional funding from the county's general fund; in fact, the clerk's office turns over excess funds not used in their office back to the general fund each year. The clerk's budget still requires approval from the fiscal court, which was approved in the amount of just over $3.2 million.
Regional Jail Discussion:
The discussion for a regional jail between Ohio, Butler, and Edmonson Counties continued during today's meeting; however, the state and counties seem to be at an impasse due to the language of the current proposed documentation. According to County Attorney Greg Vincent, the state requests that the counties agree to move forward without hard numbers. Vincent said Edmonson County cannot commit to such an agreement without knowing available funding and amounts for which the county would be responsible. While the state seems to need something in writing that says the counties are committed, Edmonson County cannot commit without firmer numbers.
Judge Executive Wil Cannon asked if all three county attorneys could meet and adjust the language in an agreement that would allow any county to back out in case the financial commitment was too great. County Attorney Vincent said he's requested this several times from Ohio County, which has yet to accommodate the request. He said Ohio County's attorney stated this hasn't been done yet because they didn't feel like the state would approve; however, Vincent said if that were the case, the entire idea of a regional jail including Edmonson County would be completely dead in the water anyway.
Magistrates chose to table the discussion until the next meeting.
Magistrates also voted to: