Jasper County proposes new budget

Local News

A $44 million spending plan is up for discussion in a southwest Missouri county.

“It was the Joplin Chamber of Commerce, Diamond Schools,” said Darieus Adams, Jasper Co. Comm.

Just a couple of the many CARES Act funding requests the Jasper County Commission has reviewed.

They’ve given out about five million dollars so far and still have millions to distribute by the end of the year.

“Want to stay on track as far as the health departments and the cities to make sure that we have enough money to help them. They’re out there and they’re front liners,” Adams said.

County commissioners are also looking ahead to 2021, working on a county budget proposed at 44 million dollars.

It would include extensive construction–both for the new courts building in Joplin and the jail expansion in Carthage.

And 300 thousand is earmarked for a opioid program in the jail and court system.

“A federal grant in the amount of $870,000 over a 3 year period,” said Sarah Hoover, Jasper Co. Auditor.

The preliminary budget also includes a three percent cost of living adjustment for county employees and a boost in health insurance benefits.

“The county is hopefully absorbing the prescription deductible on our health plan,” Hoover said.

Sales tax revenue is up nearly 5 percent this year, but the county isn’t relying on that to continue.

“We’re not really sure why sales tax is up so much. And it’s hard to predict and build a budget around uncertainty like that,” Hoover said.

Commissioners must approve the new budget by January.

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