Knott County officials make moves to end partial government shutdown

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KNOTT COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - he end to the partial government shutdown is now hopefully in sight. Monday night the Knott County Fiscal Court voted in taking steps to balance the budget.

On Monday's agenda, there were two taxes that had a second reading, one of those passed.

There was a 2% occupation tax and a 4% insurance license fee, the occupation tax did not pass but Judge Executive Jeff Dobson says they can make it work. The tax was previously at 8%.

"I feel confident that we can make this work," said Dobson. "A lot of outstanding debt came in that we had to pay and a lot of long term debt that we've acquired."

Dobson says the county is trying to pay off nearly $12 million in debt that has built up over the last decade.

He went on to say that nearly one-third of that came in the last couple of years. In the meantime, the county will continue to operate the way it has in the last couple of months.

"We made every cut that we could possibly make to to make ends meet," Dobson added.

In February, we told you about the struggles the county is facing in various areas. The road department is operating on a  very limited budget.

Dobson says he is against increasing the taxes, but this would have been much worse later this year if they were not able to take steps to balance the budget.

"Property taxes were gonna increase 16% to 18% in order to cover the Sportsplex bond payment and I felt that would have been a lot more of a burden to people than this was," Dobson said.

He added that the funds will not come from what they passed until Oct. 3, in the meantime, the government will remain in a partial shutdown.