CKFR budget nears windup

The 2005 proposed budget for Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue has been reviewed by the board of commissioners who decided a few changes had to be made. The second draft shows a total balanced budget of $11.5 million for 2005, slightly lower than the budget amount of $11.8 million that was first proposed last month. The difference mainly stems from a $330,477 reduction of overtime costs made possible by the addition of three new hires. The salaries of three proposed new hires was added so that less money will be spent on overtime. The difference in the 2005 proposed budget over the 2004 budget is an increase of 1.5 percent.

“A lot of our expenses have gone up and we’ve only increased (spending) by 1.5 percent,” said CKFR Chief Ken Burdette.

Also added to the second draft were funds for the possibility of adding a second fire inspector.

“I’m not ready to say we have a hire yet, but we want to recognize it as a possibility and put it in as a place holder,” Burdette said.

The two main sources of revenue for the proposed 2005 budget are $5.8 million in current year’s taxes resulting from the regular levy and $2.3 million in taxes from the EMS levy. The additional amount of revenue comes from various sources including ambulance billings, other taxes such as timber tax and prior taxes.

The third and final draft will be issued at the board’s November meeting and will be the last draft that will be set for adoption in December.

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