Charter board weighs budget guidelines

May 27, 1992|By Adam Sachs | Adam Sachs,Staff Writer

WESTMINSTER -- The county charter board discussed guidelines for establishing an operating and capital budget, spending money, creating reserve funds, competitive bidding and land purchases at its weekly meeting last night.

The nine-member board is writing the document that could replace Carroll's commissioner form of government, if approved by voters.

The board worked on details of the "budget and finance" article, one of several sections which will comprise the charter. Others include the personnel, legislative and general provisions articles.

Many of the articles discussed last night are similar to the policies now used by the county commissioners.

The board is aiming to place the charter on the November ballot as a referendum. Several hearings tentatively are scheduled for late June and early July to receive comments on a first draft.

The board has decided to have an appointed manager to oversee the daily administration of government, rather than an elected county executive.

Counties with charter government have the authority to pass laws that affect the jurisdiction. Currently, Carroll's commissioners must have local laws enacted or modified by the General Assembly, which meets three months a year.

The draft of the budget article would authorize the county to create a reserve fund, but requires that the council establish a limit. It also would require that the county administrator advertise for bid any contract for construction or any purchase of supplies or equipment that exceeds $12,000.

It prohibits the council or the administrator from authorizing a contract for a land purchase in which the selling price exceeds the property's appraised value by 15 percent or more.

The charter board meets at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays at the Agricultural Center in Westminster.

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