BY O.J. EARLY
The Town of Baileyton has a finalized budget with higher-than-expected revenues and all town employees receiving a 25-cents-an-hour raise.
The Baileyton Board of Mayor and Aldermen passed the budget Wednesday on second and final reading.
The board also voted to accept the retirement request of Police Chief Dale Dodds II, and voted unanimously to hire former Sullivan County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Ferguson as Dodds' replacement.
"A lot of places have had trouble [with their budgeting]," said Town Recorder Barbara Tilson.
"It was pretty routine," she said of this year's budgeting for Baileyton.
One highlight of the budget: all employees of the town get a 25-cents-an-hour raise, Tilson said.
"Some towns haven't been able to give any raises," she said. "Revenues were higher than we first projected."
Salaries and payroll total just over $70,000 of the budgeted $252,140 that the municipality's government plans to spend in the coming year. The town's general fund ended fiscal year 2012-2013 with a balance of $28,637.
The board passed the budget unanimously with little discussion.
FERGUSON NAMED CHIEF
Ferguson is a 2006 graduate of the Walters State Community College Police Academy in Greeneville.
He worked four years as a deputy in the Sullivan County Sheriff's Department, and served a year at the Tusculum Police Department.
"I'm really humbled by the confidence you've placed in me," Ferguson told the board. "I will do the best I can for you."
Dodds and Mayor Tommy Casteel both recommended hiring Ferguson, and expressed their confidence in the soon-to-be chief.
The board voted to hire Ferguson as of Aug. 1, although he will not officially take over as chief until September, when Dodds retires.
Dodds, Baileyton's police chief since 2009, will retire in September with 30 years of law enforcement experience.
He was a 26-year veteran of the Greene County Sheriff's Department when he was appointed to his current post.