Douglas County Lifts COVID-Hold On Capitol Projects
While there may not have been an official moratorium on project spending last year, Douglas County government officials did hold off on capital projects as the summer rolled on. Now as county departments look toward 2021 spending it appears that they are changing course. Douglas County will begin to prudently spend on those capital projects that are deemed necessary.
Capital projects in Douglas County could commence just about where they left off last summers. According to news sources, County Administrator Ann Doucette shared that they're ready with funding:
"Regarding our general revenue, our sales tax come in very well over budget. Interest income was down but the sales tax easily covered that. We got our full share of state shared revenue....in other words, we feel pretty comfortable releasing another $900,000."
That funding partners with county reserves. "Douglas County had set aside $950,910 in a discretionary reserve, $133,450 in a building reserve and $26,500 in an emergency building reserve".
New spending in 2021 will come with an updated look at what's needed. Towards the end of 2020, department managers were asked to review what they had put on the agenda for last year to determine if there was still a need. Meanwhile, some projects and equipment purchases that had been on last years list were ultimately made using current operating budgets and other funding.
While Douglas County will start to resume capital spending, one shouldn't assume that they'll just be funding every project that is on the agenda list. As with most budgets - there are always more requests for funding than actual dollars available. Some hard decisions will need to be made in order to prioritize needs, wants, and ultimately what gets done.