Condensed county budget available to public

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For those who want to know where their tax dollars are going, but don't want to attempt to comprehend a 300-page budget, a new 2003 Condensed Budget has been distributed by Moffat County.

The 12-page pamphlet provides a breakdown of where county tax dollars come from and where they go.

Moffat County Director of Administrative Services Debra Murray said this is the first year the county has distributed a budget in the condensed format.

"We did that because our other budget is 200 or 300 pages," she said. "We wanted something we could hand out to citizens in a format that could be easy for them to understand."

Murray said the county got the idea to print a condensed budget from several other local governments throughout Colorado and the United States.

The condensed budgets were inserted in the Craig Daily Press this week and have been placed in the libraries in Craig, Maybell and Dinosaur.

They are also available in the administration office at the Moffat County Courthouse.

The first page of the pamphlet provides a percentage breakdown of 2003 revenue sources. The second page gives a pie chart and bar graph breakdown of where property taxes come from in the county, and where they are distributed.

Another page shows where the 2-cent county sales tax is distributed, and what sales tax revenues have been annually since 1994.

The guide also gives a general description of road and bridge, public safety, health and human services, county debt services, and the landfill.

It also discusses what money is spent on statutory functions, administration and internal services, community development and The Memorial Hospital.

It also shows where $39.9 million in county expenses were spent this year.

"This puts it in everyday language so that even if you don't have knowledge of accounting, you can understand what's going on," she said. "It's the taxpayers money and they have a right to know what we're with it."

Josh Nichols can be reached at 824-7031 or jnichols@craigdailypress.com.

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