Snyder County working to balance budget

SELINSGROVE — The Snyder County Commissioners are working on their 2014 budget.  Commissioner Malcolm Derk says balancing a budget and keeping taxes down is always tough, but it’s been getting tougher lately.

“It becomes harder and harder,” Derk said.  “When you first become a commissioner there are things you can do.  We shopped around for electricity providers, saved around $75,000 the first year when we did that.  There are other areas we found to save.  But as you’re there longer, it gets harder and harder to find those big ticket savings items… but we’re still looking for them.”

Derk said they need to budget for maintenance of the several buildings the county owns.  The costs for upcoming trials in 2014 will also be quite high, as trials from this year were postponed.   He said the Affordable Care Act is also effecting next year’s budget, due to what folks are calling the “belly button tax.”

“Employers with 50 or more employees that get health insurance have to actually pay $63 per person enrolled on your plan.  The money then goes to the insurance carriers to ease their pain for having to carry anyone, that they can no longer deny coverage.  But ultimately the $63 for Snyder County is going to be about $12,000 in extra costs that we didn’t have before.”

Derk said Snyder County officials will work their hardest to keep employees and residents happy.  They hope to have a balanced budget ready to present by December 10.  Derk was a guest on WKOK’s On The Mark program Friday.  You can download that program here. (Codi Jade)

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