Osage County commissioners are facing a troubling budget ahead, after last Monday's meeting. Commission Chair Ken Kuykendall says the problems come with state and federal changes.
Kuykendall also says the new fracture-critical bridge legislation will also hit the budget hard. Osage County sports a high number of bridges, 23 of which are listed as fracture-critical. Commissioners will be touring those bridges in the coming weeks. Kuykendall says these are little county bridges that see very light traffic, being compared to heavy-traffic bridges in larger areas.
Couple that with the federal government omitting from the budget a PILT payment for the two federally-owned lakes in the county, and commissioners are faced with the tough choice to raise property taxes to help pay for necessary things. Kuykendall says nobody likes property taxes, and counties shouldn't have to raise their own taxes to pay for a state problem.