GREENCASTLE -- Putnam County 911 Director Dave Costin came before the Putnam County Council at its Tuesday meeting with a pair of additional appropriations requests. While one was approved, the other revealed some larger problems in the department's budget.
Costin requested an additional appropriation of $3,200 to cover insurance costs. The need for additional funds came in paying the insurance on the Emergency Operations Center.
Costin's second additional request, however, was denied. He was requesting $20,000 from the 911 fund to pay phone bills. However, the 911 budget is already $120,000 in debt for the year. Campbell told Costin he could not request an additional appropriation from a fund that's already in debt.
Costin said he had planned to ask for one big additional from county general at the end of the year to cover the department's shortfall.
"If it's a county general additional, there's no guarantee the state will approve it at the end of the year. That has to be done ASAP," Auditor Stephanie Campbell said.
Instead, Costin and Campbell will meet later this week to discuss how much needs to be requested for the department and come before the council in its October meeting.
Councilor Larry Parker also requested that Costin keep the council better informed when the department has budget problems.
"I thought we should know exactly where we're at. I don't like to be left in the dark," Parker said. "I think we need to know how much so we can keep track of it."
The council also approved an additional of $100,000 for county highway for the purchase of bituminous.
Finally, county assessor-elect Nancy Dennis requested reimbursement for an assessors conference she attended last month.
Because Dennis is not currently a member of the assessors association, the conference cost her $380 to attend plus mileage costs. She said she decided to go to the conference regardless of county approval because it would benefit her upon taking office.
"I just went because, no matter what, I know I'll need this training come January," Dennis said.
The council had reservations about reimbursement, as Dennis had not gotten prior approval.
"The worst part about it is it's just like going out and buying something without asking us to pay for it. That's not good, especially when you're not in office yet," Parker said.
Dennis said she did not know about the conference until after the council's August meeting.
"Had I known in time, I would have come to the council first," Dennis said.
The council finally approved the reimbursement, but not without some advice for Dennis.
"I would just ask you to call us or something before you do something like this again," councilor Nancy Fogle said.
"I would take it one step further: don't do it again," Parker said.