Decreased Coal Severance Forces Hopkins Fiscal Court to Reorganize Budget
A $700,000 shortfall in projected coal severance tax revenues is prompting the Hopkins County Fiscal Court to modify its plans to fund certain county construction projects.
Kentucky collects a severance tax on coal as it's removed from the ground and sends some of it to coal producing counties.
Judge Executive Donnie Carroll said the mild winter led to a fall in coal revenues and the state allocated less severance tax funds than expected, resulting in some promised projects missing out on funding.
“All the other projects were funded through coal severance and the last five were not funded because we ran out of coal severance money," said Carroll. "So what we’re doing is asking if those can be funded first and then we’ll ask to do another resolution, list the rest of them by priority and then multi-list them so that they would get a portion of the money those that had gotten money the year before.”
The prioritized projects include a community center, renovation of tennis and basketball courts, a new fiscal court building as well as maintenance work to roads and equipment. The county would fund the new projects at 50% until additional revenue becomes available.
Carroll said the fiscal will decide on the project spending at it’s the next meeting July 16th.