With the new fiscal year beginning Oct. 1, Lauderdale County and the City of Meridian are both deep in the budgeting process.

In Lauderdale County, said County Administrator Mike Sumrall, the board of supervisors is expected to adopt the FY2010 budget on Sept. 10. Ed Skipper, director of finance for the City of Meridian, said the city council is expected to adopt their FY2010 budget on Sept. 15.

Both county and city will hold public hearings in which summaries of the budgets will be presented for the public. The hearings are both currently scheduled for Sept. 8.

Skipper said the city administration has completed its budget proposal, which they have given to the city council. The council will review the budget and has the authority to make changes before adopting it.

The city's total proposed budget is $95,216,525, but Skipper warned that that number doesn't give an accurate idea of how much money the city has to work with.

The proposed normal operating budget, he said, includes: $34,029,000 for the general fund, $12,764,000 for the water fund, $476,700 for the golf course, $479,800 for Union Station, $39,500 for concessions, $2,603,250 for waste collection and disposal, $596,775 for homeland security, $218,450 for parking, and $4,870,00 for debt service.

Other funds, such as capital project funds, grant funds, and trust and agency funds, are not part of the normal operating budget, Skipper said.

Sumrall said the county has not fully completed its proposed budget yet because the county's personal property tax rolls have not yet been finalized. Until all the rolls are finalized, Sumrall said, the county cannot set the millage.

Sumrall said he expects the millage to go down because the board of supervisors has already made the decision to reduce the total amount of ad valorem tax collected by 2.7 percent compared to last fiscal year. But by how much the millage will be reduced cannot be determined until the rolls are finalized.

Sumrall said the county will make $7.4 million in debt payments next year.

He said the county has budgeted $10.4 million for public safety and $12.9 million for public works in the proposed budget. The proposed total budget is $49,900,104.

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