Conservation District approves budget
The Elk County Conservation District approved the proposed 2012 budget during Monday night's regular meeting.District officials budgeted $190,897 for the 2012 fiscal year with a three-percent raise for employees.An executive session was held prior to the meeting to discuss the budget."We went over some numbers and I think we came up with a fairly well-balanced budget," Braun said.Braun said the decision for the three-percent wage increase was based off of what county officials were doing."We typically went with what the county was doing to make sure we were on the same page," Braun said. "That's what is in the budget anyhow and that's what we are working with."Initially the district planned to adopt the budget in the December meeting but a motion was made Monday by board member Ron Beimel to adopt the budget.As part of the budget, the district plans on hiring a first technician on July 1.Watershed specialist Kim Bonfardine and district manager Steve Putt discussed looking into "alternative avenues" for donations."I don't want to have to rely on the same people to give us donations every year," Bonfardine said.Last year's budget was $133,346.50.In other business, Putt discussed the upcoming Agriculture Workshop he has been working on. Putt reported meeting with Jamie Ulrich of the State Conservation Commission and Beth Futrick of the Agriculture Ombudsman Program/Blair County Conservation District on Oct. 7 to discuss hosting a workshop for the agriculture community.A date and location is undecided at this time but Putt expects to host the workshop mid-January and is open to suggestions for the location.