What do I hope to accomplish if elected
We need to fix our budget process. Beaufort County currently uses a continuation budget process to determine our budget and our tax rate. By doing so we do not take into consideration any items that are unnecessary or funded projects that have already been achieved and not need to carry forth into the next year. A good example would be the replacement of computers. If a department replaces all it's computers this year they do not need to continue to receive funds for that expenditure in the future.
The budget of Beaufort County is determined each year during the budget process meetings. Each of Beaufort County's departments should develop a budget for their department each year for presentation at these meetings. Their budgets must include current services and consider any options to reduce costs or even services. The departments should also be asked to make sure that service fees and charges are reasonable. Included in this should be a 10-year capital forecast to include new projects and building maintenance. New projects should be prioritized and there should be detailed explanation for the need (NOT WANT).
Budget makers can use a line-item budget to make specific decisions, such as changing funding levels of programs being phased out to provide money for new programs or making cuts to budgeted expenses because of changes in organizational policies. Line-item budgets offer advantages for managers seeking to control expenses at the operational level. For example, the human resources department might want to trim expenses on applicant drug testing. They can be given a reduced line item for testing for the next year to reinforce a new policy that only an applicant who has accepted a job offer and agreed to a start date can take a drug test at the employer's expense.
Line-item budgeting is easy to model after past budgets and other historical data. When writing a line-item budget, the budget maker can consider whether program sites, business activities and departments should receive the same level of funding as the previous year or an increase or decrease by line item. Reducing expenditures reduces the tax rate. By using a line item budget instead of the continuation budget we can cut costs to our citizens in the form of their yearly tax bill. If we keep on like we are doing now the tax bill can only go up.
Back door deals
Have you noticed that the commission meetings are getting shorter and shorter? This is because some of the issues are being decided before you even hear about it. Chickengate is still alive and doing well in Beaufort County. People are being appointed to boards and other positions without the required full approval of the Board of Commissioners. What else are they determining before ever coming to a meeting and discussing things in public?
The meetings also used to be on cable tv. Now it is on the city channel which few people in the county get. No longer can you see the face of whom is talking. You can tell a lot about what is being said by just looking at a person when they talk.
Honesty & Integrity
Can we trust the current county commissioners to do what is best for the county? If you stay with what we have now you can trust your taxes will continue to rise, they have said it themselves. At least one of these "Yellow Sheet" Conservatives has no problems raising your taxes and promises to do it again. Did he also use a backdoor maneuver to close the hospital in Belhaven? Yes he did. So what is he willing to do tomorrow and how will it affect you? What's next?
Five members of our county commissioners are Republicans. Several of them only became Republicans, in name only, when they decided to run for office. They continue to spend money like there is no tomorrow. They have taken out loans and spent down the fund balance. They have raised your taxes and promise to continue to do so.
Fuzzy math and sleight of hand with the budget is being used to justify expenses. A $4.7 million dollar "smart" water meter system was not needed. The 13,000 water customers in the county have already seen their water bill increase and will see it increase even more to pay for these meters. And in 10 years they might have to do it all over again because the "smart" meters will need to be replaced. Just because some other county has it doesn't mean it is the best for Beaufort County.
We need to get back to the basics, stop wasteful spending and conduct the business of the county in public. If elected I will do that. Remember, you can only vote for one person on March 3rd in the commission race. Please Vote for Tandy Dunn.
Contact: Tandy Dunn
firstname.lastname@example.org (252) 341-9827