While there were no major surprises in the Jackson County 2007 audit, the impact of a growing county government was evident.
Overall revenues to the county, excluding borrowing, grew 5.5 percent in 2007 over 2006, topping $49 million.
But General Fund expenses, which is the core county fund and not as subject to wide swings of borrowing, grew by 15 percent. Indeed, were it not for having allocated $1 million in borrowed funds for future use, the county’s General Fund would have been in the red for the year.
One of the problems for the county in 2007 was a drop in service charges by the county ambulance department to $766,000, down from $843,000 in 2006 on top of a growth in ambulance expenses. That forced the county’s overall support of the ambulance service up 39 percent from $1.56 million in 2006 to $2.16 million last year.
As in past years, the county’s major source of revenue in 2007 continued to be property and sales taxes and its major area of expense was public safety, which includes the sheriff’s department, county jail, EMS and other departments.