Thursday, August 27, 2015

A second Sampling of County Council Budget Hearing Notes from 27 August 2015

27 August 2015 Dearborn County Council Meeting Notes

Present: Randy Lyness, President, Dennis Kraus. Sr., Dan Lansing, Liz Morris, Charlie Keyes, Ryan Brandt, and Bill Ullrich. 
Also present: Gayle Pennington, Auditor and Leah Bailey, Comptroller and Connie Fromhold for a while.

I came in at 9:30 AM while Council was finishing up with the County Clerk, Rick Probst

Clerk of Courts - Rick Probst- voting costs seem to be up significantly. Council tried to cut education and training- but that was JUST for poll workers and Probst said it was down to the penny. The poll workers need to be trained annually- as some are new and some have been off a year and need reminder training. Council made some cuts with the expectation that Probst will have to be back for extra later.

Sheriff Dept- Mike Krienhop and his “posse”- the jail matron ( Jo) , Jack Prarat, and John Lee (?). Addressed $100,000 for inmate meals that was an additional over 2015 budget. Meals run about $400,000 a year. So far they have spent $242,000. Inmate population has decreased. People have been able to make their bonds. Averaged 280 and now averaged about 250 inmates. Ullrich said the judges are trying to make the bond affordable. Morris moved and Brandt 2nd to approve $100,000 out of Riverboat Revenue for inmate meals for the rest of 2015. 

Lansing asked about the salary change- and Kreinhop said it was the law- but he didn’t ask for it last year so he personally saved the county $30,000. They are expecting an employee to retire next month- an evidence technician ( Ed Lewis). If the new deputy is hired- then the evidence technician can be deleted. 2007- had 30 sworn deputies. Presently we are at 28 sworn deputies. Average deputies for 50,000 population counties is 35 deputies. Kraus said the Personnel Advisory Committee did not recommend adding an extra post. If we aren’t going to listen the PAC then why have it? Council did want to keep listening to PAC advice. Kreinhop later talked about being short on deputy and Kraus said essentially that he still stands by the PAC decision. 

Lansing asked if the jail would need more officers too. Kreinhop said yes , he is asking for more there too. Ullrich backed up that need plus said they have their own in- house lab now so they hope to speed up evidence analysis. They won’t have to get experts from INDY to testify then. Big discussion on the number of deputies going down. Jack Prarat got up and said that we are doing our part and getting grants for the lab etc. Trying to find money to offset these things. They have an incinerator to get rid of the evidence and drugs. We have to have that. Police pension was discussed. The county is listed at 92% GOOD in funding the pension of all the 92 counties. They set the range of funding for the pension as $244,182 this year. 

The PAC Committee said they wanted to see the additional money for the tech officer to go for an additional jail officer. The actual minutes were read out by Dennis Kraus. Kreinhop kept up the pressure trying to get the extra deputy. He has a nice balanced schedule right now. ( So why does he need another body?) Council moved on- to decide it firmly at  the end. 

Merit Board has 5 members. Sheriff appoints 3 and the other 2 are elected by the merit deputies. They get $100/meeting and meet 4 times a year. Law enforcement supplies is separate from police supplies. Cuts were made in each. Gasoline was discussed and only billing the sheriff for what they use. They allotted $110,000 for the sheriff gas. Body armor costs. Always need for new officers and any that outgrow theirs. Probably needs about 5-6 in 2016. The vests are good for 5 years. Each costs about $800. Training expense $3100 this year so far. They have 35 vehicles in the dept. The oldest is a 1999 15-passenger van with 120,000 miles on it. 
Liz Morris hit the idea of not having family in the sheriff cars and also in the Walmart Parking lot etc. Sheriff said- Family members are authorized to be in the vehicles. The presence of a police vehicle is a deterrent to crime. Example taking the family to church in a police cruiser. The sheriff determines the policy. He is elected.

Sheriff asked for 4 new jailers. Morris went on at length about them claiming numerous times it would be staff neutral. Because of the technological changes- it would be staff neutral. She wants to hold to the one additional. They can revisit in 2017. If he  -the jail commander -was unsure of his answer then he should have stated. He works for YOU. He speaks for you. And you were there for these discussions and questions also. She is not changing her mind on this now. Kreinhop went on about liability and needing more personnel to supervise inmates. He calls it preventative. Staff analysis recommended 23 additional officers and he’s only asking for 4. Lansing said he’s tried of the constant threat of being sued. Kreinhop said that this is preventative measure. WHEN WAS A STAFF ANALYSIS OF JAIL DONE? BY WHOM? Lansing asked the sheriff as he didn’t know either- Kreinhop answer: done in January of last year - Jan 2014. Was it for when the jail was full? Kreinhop - We really didn’t address that. (So how DID they determine staffing?) 

Nurse for jail. Overtime expenses. They have an inmate that goes to the hospital for long term care and have an officer that has to go with him. Mental health and dental. Those costs go above and beyond our contracted health provider. They allotted $300,000. 

Sheriff IT costs. John Lee spoke- here are still some costs until they get the new computer and IT services with Spillman until 2016. Cum cap and cum courthouse is covering some of this. Lot of equipment on battery backup. The cameras take up more hard drive space now as resolution increases. $267,767- Lyness asked- what if we have to cut this- can he move money from other spaces. Cum Courthouse and Cum Capital Development.

Lunch break. 11:45- 12:45PM

Three judges were covered from 12:45-1:30 PM- only changes in pauper attorney funds essentially.

Council began discussing various cuts.

The lobbyist issue was first. Council wants to be copied on all the Barnes and Thornburg communications related to their jobs. Lewes and Kappes will be out. Barnes and Thornburg helped with federal grants also for the justice dept. and prosecutor. Pennington will notify Lewes and Kappes of their termination and Barnes and Thornburg of the need for Council communications. They will also notify the cities and towns, as they paid a portion of Lewes and Kappes. 

YES home fuel oil bills were discussed. They had to be sure heat was covered. 

Riverboat Revenue Funds:
1191 RR fund- based on admissions tax:
For 2015 $5 million total 
97% went to county gov’t. operations
2 % went to private schools
1% went to park board capital improvements

7303 fund- other RR fund:
For 2015 $7million
9% Capital Projects Long Term- Fund 4924
17.5% Growth and Development Fund 4915
9.5% Emergency Appropriations Fund 4914
8% Transportation Infrastructure
6% Bridge Renovations
5% EMS- 21 departments
25% Shared Gaming Admissions tax with municipalities
20% Highway 4916- requires annual plan approved by majority of Council before release

FOR 2016- the total for 1191 RR will be about $4.6 million so those go down by about $400,000
For 7303 the 2016 total would be about $6,500,000

Tax rate brings in 6.4 million ???
COIT brings in $6.2million ???

Brandt- don’t want to hire any more employees than what we have.

Lyness- what about the health plan we have? We need to look at this.Asked Gayle Pennington to get him the number from 10 years ago and then current number.

I asked the Council about Umbaugh’s numbers and analysis that shows on p10-12 that Riverboat Savings had about $11 million and then went to a bit over $7 million by the end of this year. I thought that we had $9 million in Riverboat Savings? There was some discussion about this and Phil Weaver came over with numbers and Council kept checking things.

Council compared Frank Cummins numbers and Umbaugh’s and they think they like Cummin’s numbers better. 

Liz Morris said she was done in and wanted to stop for the day and start fresh tomorrow on that. Council agreed.

Council adjourned at 3:15 PM and will reconvene tomorrow at 9 AM to finish up.

Christine Brauer Mueller

Lawrenceburg Township


Anonymous said...

what is a jail matron? Who's Jo?

Anonymous said...

jail staffing analysis was, more than likely, done by Bill Wilson. Wilson is a former Monroe county jail commander. He works for a private jail consulting business now and possibly the IDOC....An independent evidence technician from INDY seems a better option than an in-house tech.

Anonymous said...

Wondering where the information is on the Coroner's budget. It seems this department gets forgotten about a lot, however their budget is constantly being screwed with.