Proposed sheriff's budget includes warrant software purchase

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By Jonna Spelbring Priester

General Manager

In the proposed Henry County Sheriff’s budget submitted to the Henry County Fiscal Court in November, Sheriff Danny Cravens estimated 2008 will see excess fees of $3,425, an almost $2,500 increase over the budget for 2007. Following a fiscal court committee’s review of the budget, the excess fees increased after $8,000 was removed from the proposed disbersements.

In the initial proposed budget, Cravens projected receipts at $479,180, a 9.2 percent increase over the estimated receipts for 2007. The budget, as presented in the November fiscal court meeting, also includes estimated expenditures of $475,755, or an increase of 8.7 percent over 2007.

Key changes within Cravens’ estimated receipts compared to 2007 are a decrease in the state Kentucky Law Enforcement Foundation Program Fund (hazardous duty pay) from more than $17,000 in 2007 to $12,000 in 2008. The budget also includes an increase of $2,000, to $5,000, in the fines and fees collected through the Circuit Clerk, and an increase of more than $19,000, to $43,600, for serving papers. A substantial increase of $35,500 in interest earned also was added to the budget.

Of the estimated $37,975 increase in disbursements, $30,750 falls under ‘other gross salaries,’ and $7,500 for computer software. During the fiscal court meeting in which he presented the budget, Cravens said the department needed a special program that would help them access and serve warrants.

“What happens, is, for instance, a warrant is sent to Bullitt County, and that person is stopped in Shelby County,” Cravens said. “(If) they call for that warrant, nobody can get to it if it’s after court hours, we have to get (the warrant) in Bullitt County.” Cravens said situations like this have happened several times in Henry County. One individual in particular, he said, was stopped in Henry County three different times before the warrant was obtained.

“The only thing we can do is get the computer software where I can take all the warrants that are issued and have them in the computer system and I can access that.

“It’ll increase our ability to get those cases in and get them resolved quicker.”

Cravens later said the software line item also will include a program that will allow mortgage companies to access tax files through the internet.

The change in gross salaries, Cravens explained, came about when the salary for an administrative member of the department was moved out of deputies gross salaries.

Since the presentation of the budget at the November meeting, Cravens said the fiscal court committee reduced deputies’ gross salaries by $5,000 (to $125,000), uniforms by $1,000 (to $5,000), cell phones by $1,000 (to $2,500) and miscellaneous items by $1,000 (to $2,000). That changed estimated disbursements to $467,755.

The Fiscal Court will consider the 2008 sheriff’s and county clerk’s budgets at the December meeting on Tues., Dec. 18.

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