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CalCo Admin UpdateBY KELLI SCOTT, Co. Admn./ControllerOur fiscal year is the calendar year, and as such we are focused now on the 2019 budgeting pro- cess, which remains a challenge given flat state funding and property tax revenueincreases limited to inflationary rates. I’m proud that in my tenure as Calhoun Coun- ty Administrator/Controller starting since 2009, the Board of Commissioners has never adopted a deficit spending plan for our General Fund budget, and in fact we have increased that fund balance each year. We remain focused on long-term strategies that foster safety and wellbeing of our em- ployees, responsibly maintain our facili- ties, and continuously improve services based on the needs of our community.One noticeable example of our respon- siveness to changing needs is the review and revision in hours at the recycling cen- ters operated by Calhoun County.2019 Budgeting ProcessStarting Thursday, Nov. 1, hours at the Albion and Marshall Recycling Centers will shift to better match the availability of volunteers and improve the customer expe- rience at each center by, hopefully, reduc- ing wait time. New hours are as follows...New hours at the Albion Recycling Center216 N. Eaton Street in Albion Monday, 9am to noon Wednesday, 10am to 6pmEvery first Saturday of the month, 9am to noonNew hours at the Marshall Recycling Center13300 15 Mile Road in Marshall Tuesday, 10am to 6pmThursday, 10am to 6pmEvery third Saturday of the month, 9am to noonWe believe these changes will ulti- mately better serve residents. As always,Calhoun County residents who do not have curbside recycling can pick up a program card at their local municipality and recycle for free at the C&C Landfill in Marshall. The landfill is open six days a week and offers single-stream recycling, which does not require sorting. Learn more at calhoun- are several other items to be incor- porated into next year’s budget as we work toward a scheduled December 6 adoption:• The addition of a second high deduct- ible health insurance plan with a lower premium, higher deductible design that should save costs for the county and employees.• Completion of our latest energy savings project, including a new geothermal heating and cooling system at the Coun- ty Building in Marshall. This project and others with Honeywell Internation- al have generated utility cost savingsof more than $1.2 million over the pastseven years.• Savings in annual pension costs throughbargained strategies including closing certain plans to new hires, payments in excess of actuarially required amounts, and issuance of pension obligation bonds.• Continued tight management of vacant positions and restructuring of job func- tions to contain compensation costs and improve customer service.• Implementation and enhancement of technology and security systems to maximize efficiencies in work flow and create safer environments. For example, our courts are implementing a system that will send reminders for court appearances and payments due via text message.• The creation of a new Public Defend- er Office as mandated by recent state legislation, with all incremental costs to be funded with state grant dollars.• Many shared service arrangements and facilities leases that bring in millions of dollars from other entities that provide them with reduced costs and the county with funding to offset our costs to operate.For updates about the budgeting process and all County news, visit www. of Downtown Battle Creek’s Winter FestivalSATURDAYS Nov. 24-Dec. 22LIKE US ON  FOR REGULAR UPDATES: DowntownBTLCRK and BC CargoTOGETHER We Are Creating A Healthy Local Economy.Small Business Development Fund34 WEST JACKSON STREET, SUITE 3B | 269-966-3355 ext. 119216 SCENE 4311 I CHARITABLE ISSUE

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