Mt. Vernon Register-News

September 21, 2013

County has $400K in overdue bills

By RICK HAYES rick.hayes@register-news.com
The Register-News

---- — MT. VERNON —Without paying a single bill, Jefferson County Treasurer Dan Knox has projected the county will have a net balance of $61,000 at the end of October.

Knox reported at Thursday's Fiscal Committee meeting, the county has a backlog of over $400,000 in claims still outstanding.

"I think the overall financial picture is it's still manageable, but when we reach this time of the year we have a lot of claims coming in, and right now we have an unusually large amount of claims that are sitting there that haven't been paid," Knox said.

"We have over $50,000 to be paid out to Advanced Healthcare Corrections. We have another health insurance payment coming up for approximately $84,000. All these things are coming due at the same time, and that is what is creating the backlog," he added.

Knox said some of the oldest claims date back for bills that should've been paid in July, and approved in August.

"For the July claims there's about $65,000 from the sheriff's department, and there is about $82,000 that can be traced back to miscellaneous departments in the county," Knox said.

Knox told Committee members that revenue was actually up about $12,000 from September a year ago. He reasoned that was because of an increase in income tax receipts.

"They increased the personal and corporate income tax so that's where the majority of it comes from. I'm sure there hasn't been an increase in the sales tax because of the construction on the interstate. I've not seen any numbers, but they say that slows down the sales tax revenue, which stands to reason," Knox said.

Knox said the current claims over revenue is $341,132, and without the real estate distribution that amount would balloon to $441,175.

The balance in the General Corporate working cash fund is $232,000, and monthly claims to be approved on Monday are $106,934. The treasurer's office is currently holding monthly claims of $160,000, information states. Knox reported the treasurer's office will "release as much as we can" on Wednesday.

The county still has $150,000 in its emergency payroll fund, and with three payrolls in October, it may become necessary to tap into that fund, it was reported.

During a Services Committee meeting, Chairman Robert White said the county would be seeking bids for property and casualty and worker's compensation insurance. He indicated the county is interested in a dividend plan for the worker's compensation plan. The county's current plans expire on Jan. 1, according to Administrative Assistant Suzy Tate.

The county also assigned health insurance carriers to three quoting agents. Bruce Hapeman Insurance Group was assigned Health Alliance, IPMG and Trustmark; USI was assigned United Healthcare, Blue Cross/Blue Shield and BAS; and Central Management Services was assigned Cigna, Coventry and Health Link.

Agents will be required to submit bids to the county by 4 p.m. Nov. 12 at the county clerk's office. The Services Committee will review the bids at its November meeting.