TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Numerous Vigo County department heads have requested for additional funds for gasoline for this year’s budget.
This comes after a summer where the country experienced record high gas prices and inflation. This is something that caught many off guard and was almost impossible to forecast when making budgets for this year.
Vigo County Health Department Administrator Joni Wise said that during the summer months, they’re having to pay five times more gas than earlier in the year.
The busy summer months include an increase of inspections of large bodies of waters including pools and recreational water. The Vector control team is also out treating catch basins with mosquito and larvae retardants in the county.
“Our gasoline bills each month were running around $700 to $800 each month,” Wise explained. “The last couple of months they’ve ran almost $4,000 for June and July.”
These record high gas prices caught many off guard. With budgets being made well in advance, it was almost impossible to prepare for this type of inflation.
“Last year we couldn’t have anticipated gasoline prices getting as high as they have been this summer,” Wise said.
The Vigo County Council sent a memo asking department heads how much more funds that they would need to finish the year. The council understood the probable need for more gas appropriations and would rather deal with these requests all at one time.
Councilwoman Vicki Weger said that they will distribute funds in the most efficient way possible.
“Our job is to see that we use the taxpayer dollar for the people who live here in the best and most efficient manner that we can,” Weger stated.
Wise said that they routinely check their vehicles to ensure that they’re running fuel efficiently. This is to make sure that they’re keeping their fuel usage low despite the summer months being one of the busiest times of the year for the health department.
“This is some of the busiest time of the year,” Wise explained. “Traditionally, it is a high usage of gasoline season.”
County council will discuss appropriations for this years budget at its next scheduled regular meeting.
The final budget for next year must be approved by the end of November.