Smith and Gregg Counties approve budgets - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Smith and Gregg Counties approve budgets

The Smith county budget for 2012 was unanimously adopted by commissioners this morning.  They also adopted a voter-approved one-cent tax rate increase.

One last minute change to the proposed budget this morning increased the courthouse security by $30,000. 

Smith County Judge Joel Baker says they tried to maintain a high level of taxpayer services despite the down economy.

"We're here to serve the citizens of Smith county and we can't always provide the things they want us to provide and there's a balance between how much they're willing to pay for the services that they want," says Baker.

Judge Baker says base salaries for Smith county employees will remain frozen and the 2012 budget only allows for the minimum equipment purchases.

Gregg county also approved a budget this morning.

Gregg county commissioners unanimously approved the 2011-2012 budget.  The budget includes a new tax rate of .265, which is about a quarter-cent less than last year.

The new budget includes $48,000,000 in spending.

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