Cape Girardeau County will work with an $11.8 million budget this year after 2013 saw flat sales tax revenue. Commissioners approved the budget Thursday with requests totaling $11,803,446. The county expects to end the year with an unencumbered balance of $464,082, which is the highest amount in several years after falling to $154,000 in 2012. This year's budget will include a 2 percent pay raise for county employees, who did not receive a raise in 2013. Changes in other spending include: $44,000 more for technology; $22,000 more for repairs; $17,000 less for Common Pleas Courthouse maintenance; $19,000 less for the circuit clerk's office; $72,000 less for the sheriff's department. The county will spend more on elections -- around $125,000 more -- and expects to spend $80,000 more on additional staff for the state's child support services office but will be reimbursed by the state.
Commissioners also approved rescheduling a public hearing on the county placing a 1 percent use tax on the April ballot for 9:30 a.m. Jan. 16 at the county administration building in Jackson. A use tax, which can be levied on certain purchases made out of state by Missouri residents, is under consideration to put before voters by several local governments. The commission must vote to place a use-tax question on the ballot before the Jan. 28 certification deadline for the April 8 municipal ballot.
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