"I don't see where [the highway budget] has fallen behind. I know, as the highway superintendent, that in the last eight years I've always had money left over at the end of the year," said Whalen.
He said he has used that surplus to help carry operations into January and February of the following year.
"We totally run on the county sales tax, and with me doing what I would do " running only money and carrying it over into one-half of the following year " it helped operations. I've done that every year, and it appears there is going to have $50,000 around this year," said Whalen.
Whalen said that he's always held the line on taxes and has ended the year with extra money in the budget.
"I've held the line on the preliminary budget," said Whalen of the budget he turned into Southworth. "It was $3,000 less than last year."
Southworth said that sales tax revenue for the county was down 13 percent this year. For the 2010 budget she took the sales tax level and budgeted it to be 15 percent less than the total sales tax revenue they're projected to see coming in for the year.
"I would rather be more conservative. If we get extra funds, that's wonderful, rather than being overly optimistic and see budget shortfalls," said Southworth. "Maybe the board will see things that I didn't see. That's what the budget workshops are for."
She added she thinks the budget in general will be contentious this year.
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