The Ottumwa Courier

Wapello County

March 11, 2014

Officials hold line on Wapello budget

OTTUMWA — Taxpayers in Wapello can breathe a sign of relief. Taxes will go down and county services will not be cut.

On Tuesday night, Wapello County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt its 2014-2015 budget with little opposition from the general public.

The only complaint was delivered by Joe Mulcahy, chairman of Wapello County Veterans Affairs. “We’d like to know the reasons why we can’t have a director for 40 hours per week,” said Mulcahy. “We feel we produced a good budget. We’re open to discussion on this. It’s not fair to the veterans of Wapello County. We could do more for our veterans if the office was opened 40 hours.”

However, County Board Chairman Jerry Parker explained the board did not cut services to veterans. “The service is what we’ve had in the past. Over the years, we’ve increased the Veteran’s Service officer from 20 to 30 hours per week.”

To be fair, Parker said the county looks over every department’s budget thoroughly. Once the budget is set and published in the legal newspaper of record, Parker said, the county can not increase a department’s budget. It can only decrease it after the public hearing.

Supervisor Greg Kenning suggested to Mulcahy develop a plan. “Make a comparison between other veterans affairs offices of comparable size and their numbers,” he said. “Comparing the Veteran’s Affairs office to the Treasurer’s office, isn’t fair.”

“If we are convinced, then we’ll look at expanding hours,” said Supervisor Steve Seigel. “My mind isn’t closed to the idea (of expansion). We need to hear you say, ‘why’.”

Until then, the county board wasn’t nudging from its prepared budget for the coming year.

“Our goal is to try to reduce taxes without reducing services,” said Parker. “Reducing taxes is one way to improve our economy to make it conducive to economic development. It’s a balancing act to do that. None of the departments got everything they asked for. The sheriff’s department wanted another vehicle and we didn’t approve that. I’m pleased with the budget.

Text Only
Wapello County
  • 0617 OTT Wapello Co Fair color photo -L -M Come one, come all to the Wapello County Fair

    ELDON — The Wapello County Fair is just around the corner, kicking off with entries being welcomed at Wapello Hall and the Iowa Agricultural Hall from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday. On Thursday, entries for competition will be received from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at

    June 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Siegel, Rubel face off in forum OTTUMWA — For Steve Siegel, a political campaign is nothing new. For Tom Rubel, being the candidate is a first. Now they want the same job. Siegel and Rubel are seeking the Democratic nomination for SD 41, the Iowa Senate district which includes Ottu

    May 29, 2014

  • 0530 OTT Oak tatters picture color Oak leaves left in tatters

    OTTUMWA — Trees throughout Iowa have been terrorized by the likes of Emerald Ash Borer and other dangers in the past months and now oak trees throughout Iowa are in a little bit of more trouble because of a disease called oak tatters. Thankfully, tho

    May 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Help fight hunger OTTUMWA — The groups began with a question: How to better help Wapello County residents who don't have enough decent food. Next week, they'll decide if they've found any answers. The food security project, Growing Wapello Together, had small groups m

    May 28, 2014

  • Attempted murder trial set for July KEOSAUQUA — The Van Buren County man accused of attempted murder could head to trial in a remarkably short time. Dimitrious Royal has a trial date of July 15. If that date is when the trial actually begins, it would take place just more than 11 weeks

    May 28, 2014

  • Agency aces assessment OTTUMWA — A local agency had a lot riding on the outcome of an independent review. They nailed it. "The credential we just received was to show we are a quality [organization]," said Bryan Dunn, executive director of Sieda Community Action. "It's som

    May 27, 2014

  • County backs bike rides OTTUMWA — Bike rides in Wapello County just received a personal push of goodwill from Wapello County Board of Supervisors. Tuesday, supervisors signed a resolution of support for three area bike rides to be conducted in June. The rides include the H

    May 27, 2014

  • 0527 OTT EMS week color photo -L -M ORHC celebrates EMS Week OTTUMWA — During National EMS week, May 18-24, Ottumwa Regional Health Center (ORHC) celebrated its staff, the community EMS providers and the importance of being prepared in emergency situations through education. The ambulance service at ORHC, also

    May 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • Moving into the future OTTUMWA — Wapello County Supervisor Greg Kenning joked after the board approved upgrading the county’s servers Tuesday. “You can put away your quills.” Jokes asides, Wapello County will now have more opportunity to maximize its server resources. The

    May 20, 2014

  • 0520 OTT mushroom provided -T -M Hidden treasure

    OTTUMWA — Yes, it's kind of like winning the lottery. A mushroom hunter and her family cheerfully acknowledged that feeling after stopping by the Ottumwa Courier on Monday. In one lucky search, they'd found hundreds of morels totaling 10 pounds. As u

    May 19, 2014 1 Photo

AP National