The Marshall County Council may soon be considering how they approve budget transfers.
During Monday morning’s meeting, administrators within the county government questioned how the County Council is now approving budget transfers. According to multiple department heads, county elected officials are not necessarily required to approve budget line item transfers within the same fund.
Marshall County Auditor Julie Fox says the State Board of Accounts allows for different interpretations.
“They kind of looked at it either way depending on how the council had set it up previously,” says Fox. “I looked for something that directed the Auditor to do it a certain way and did not find anything. So it’s up to you.”
The Council advised it had not changed policies in any formal sense.
Several of the department heads suggested that when they have to wait for county council approval for certain transfers, line items run in the red.
While some County Council members expressed a desire to improve efficiency, others stated there were reasons behind approving the line item transfers themselves.
Attending the meeting in his capacity as Sheriff, former County Council President Matt Hassel says they’ve previously allowed for oversight while trusting the department heads to make certain transfer decisions.
“The Department heads were turning those in for the council to see them,” says Hassel. “So I think that’s where it got confused. But a lot of times I had transfers that were within the same category and we approved them, but we didn’t have to.”
Fox has provided County Council members with a copy of the statute in question for further consideration.
An upcoming work session was cited as a good time to discuss the matter further prior to making any decisions. Future action is expected.