The Mornin' Mail is published every weekday except major holidays
Monday, June 28, 2010 Volume XIX, Number 6

did ya know?.

Did Ya Know?.. . There will be a cancer benefit on July 31 at the Carthage VFW from 12 to 6 PM for Bill Pearce, Jr. Auction at 3 PM. Donations are welcome.

Did Ya Know?.. . Carthage Farmers Market every Wed. and Sat starting at 7 a.m. Plants, produce and more. Carthage Square.

Did Ya Know?...The City of Carthage will be spraying for mosquitoes Monday June 28 through Friday July 2. Your area will be sprayed in the evening of the day your garbage is picked up.

today's laugh

How many of these have you said?

Don’t ask me, ask your mother. Were you raised in a barn? Close the door. You didn’t beat me. I let you win. Big boys don’t cry. Don’t worry. It’s only blood. Don’t you know any normal boys? Now you listen to ME, Buster! I’ll play catch after I read the paper. Coffee will stunt your growth. A little dirt never hurt anyone, just wipe it off.. Get your elbows off the table. I told you, keep your eye on the ball. Who said life was supposed to be fair. Always say please and thank you. That way, you get more. If you forget, you’ll be grounded till the end of the world. You call that a haircut? "Hey" is for horses. This will hurt me a lot more than it hurts you. Turn off those lights. Do you think I am made of money? You call that noise "music"? We’re not lost. I’m just not sure where we are........ to be continued


A Chronological Record of Events as they have Transpired in the City and County since our last Issue.

The Canning Factory.

The Carthage canning factory is not in operation this summer, but may be opened this fall to can peaches and apples. J. H. Magee, one of the proprietors of the establishment says the factory is not operating because of uncertain business conditions last winter that did not justify putting out seeds to farmers who contract with us. "We expect to put out seeds again this winter," said Mr. Magee, "and will be running as usual next summer." Mr. Magee said, "to run the factory right we ought to have no less than 500 acres of ground cultivated for us. Farmers have usually found it very profitable to grow vegetables for us. Tomatoes, one of the chief vegetables we can, yields an average of 150 to 200 bushels to the acre. We usually pay about twenty cents per bushel for tomatoes at our factory door." The factory is a creditable institution for the City and gives employment to a number of hands, mostly women and children.

  Today's Feature

Where the Money Goes.

Quoted from this year’s City budget document

"The projected ending fund balance in the General Fund is slightly higher than in prior years. The main reason for this is the uncertainty of the economic recovery and its potential duration. If it lasts longer thanjust the current fiscal year, the City would like to be prepared to weather the storm with these funds instead of having to further reduce the budget potentially affecting service levels and employees.

In light ofthe economic conditions stated above, and the overall budget policies for Fiscal 2011, the main emphases of the budget were again reducing expenditures to required levels while preserving personnel and service levels as much as possible. To further complicate the matter, projected increases that impacted all operating departments were projected increases in group health & life insurance rates, a 2% Step increase, and an increase in Police & Fire Pension costs. The average increase in health & life insurance rates is projected to be approximately 10% at renewal of the contract. The renewal date is November 1, 2010; therefore, the projected rate change will impact about eight (8) months of the fiscal year. As employees had wages frozen last year and had their portion of dependent coverage of the health & life premium increased, the Council felt that a Step increase was warranted. The Mayor and the Budget Committee again indicated their preference, if possible, to not adversely impact staffmg levels. However, one full-time position (Code Enforcement Officer) was eliminated through attrition in the Public Works Department. It was felt that with the downturn in the economy, this position could remain vacant until such time as more activity would occur. The City’S LAGERS retirement plan contribution rate dropped to 6.2% of covered payroll from 6.7%. Since Fiscal 2000, the contribution for LAGERS has decreased 44.14%. The Police and Firemen’s Retirement Fund increased approximately 15% from last year’s rate. Additionally, the Police and Firemen’s Retirement Fund contribution rate has increased approximately 124.6% since Fiscal 2000. Because of the poor performance of the stock market, the Police and Firemen’s Retirement Fund will probably require another increase next Fiscal Year.

Generally, recommended appropriations in the General Revenue fund provide for a slightly decreased level of municipal services as provided for last year. There are no new programs being proposed or recommended for the new Fiscal year. Capital and capital projects are being proposed based on the needs presented by the Department Heads and available funds. Total expenditures for Fiscal 2011 are $7,297,494. This is approximately 6.60% below the approved Fiscal 2010 Budget of $7,813,090. The Personal Services category shows a decrease of approximately $94,963 from last year. This includes the increases for Group Health & Life Insurance premiums, the 2% Step increase and the change in the pension rate. The Supplies and Services category shows an overall decrease of $20,046 from last year’s budget. Again, the decreases are due to cuts in the operating budget as a result of lower revenue projections on top of approximately $277,000 in cuts in fiscal 2010’s budget. The largest cuts came in the Capital Improvements portion ofthe budget. Over $5,000,000 was cut from this portion ofthe budget. The CMA budget includes funds in the sick leave buyout line item for potential retirements in the fiscal year. This fiscal year, two letters were received indicating potential retirements. This caused an increase in this line item in the budget of 5.26%. Additionally, the increased transfer for the Golf Course operations caused the entire departmental budget to increase approximately 2.48% above the 2010 budget. The remaining budgets in the General Fund managed to reduce spending levels from the previous year. This fiscal year, a new General Fund department has been created. This is the Municipal Court operations. Formerly, these were accounted for in the Police Department’s budget. Because of problems, they have been moved under the supervision ofthe City Clerk. Appropriate expenses formerly in the Police Department have been moved to the new budget. Departmental operating budgets in the General Fund primarily kept their allocation for supplies and services and training at or near the same as last fiscal year. Although fuel prices have fluctuated since last year, the departments are planning on expenditures at about the same level. Other changes in the Supplies and Services category relate to utilities and maintenance items for all the departments. Total Supplies and Services for Fiscal 2011 are comparable number for Fiscal 2010 was $1,698,139. The Personal Services, Supplies and Services, and the Capital categories of the budget decreased from the previous fiscal year while the Travel and Training and category increased from last year’s comparable budget. Personal Services decreased 1.8% (due primarily to retirements and attrition); Supplies & Services decreased 1.18%; Capital expenditures decreased 49.98%; and Travel & Training increased 1.61%. This Budget provides for capital equipment and projects for the various departments to maintain current service levels. Total capital equipment and capital projects last year amounted to $802,880 compared to $401,593 this year. "

Just Jake Talkin'

I suppose most have heard about enough about the City budget by now. Today will be the last of the "Where the Money Goes" series for a while.

I may still reserve the right to come back to the document on occasion.

I would like ta point out that most of the City revenue comes from a sales tax of one sort or another. Most are aware of the regular merchandise sales tax, but there is also a half percent sales tax the City gets from gasoline sales within City limits. The other main source of revenue comes from CW&EP. It kicks in about a million point thee as a return to the City. Shoppin’ in Carthage does make a difference.

You might also consider recommendin’ the City Golf course to your buddies. Ever’ dollar they spend out there is one less the rest of have to contribute in subsidy.

This is some fact, but mostly,

Just Jake Talkin’.


Sponsored by Carthage Printing

Weekly Columns

No Column today

Copyright 1997-2010 by Heritage Publishing. All rights reserved.