The Aug. 18 meeting began at a few minutes after 6 p.m. due to a scheduling conflict for the Charlotte Wilson conference room. When Board Chairman Preston Hawkins raised the gavel to open the meeting, he commented that it was a rough time of year.
The commissioners had been struggling with budget figures for more than two weeks, and each time it seemed they were getting close to balancing the revenues and expenses, a new seemingly essential expense would materialize.
Department heads submitted $1.8 million in increases for 2015, and early on in the process, the commissioners decided to revert to previous budget figures.
Even starting with those expenses, they began the process $405,254 in the red because of a shortfall in revenue and an increase in employee health insurance costs.
That is where the meeting started, and County Administrator Mike Underwood guided the discussion, beginning with suggestions by Commissioner Jonathan Pitts.
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