Williamson County mental health care could receive a boost in upcoming budget year

The Williamson County Commissioners Court met Tuesday for its weekly meeting.

The Williamson County Commissioners Court met Tuesday for its weekly meeting.

Updated Aug. 23 at 11:15 a.m.

Williamson County Commissioners Court voted to tentatively approve Fiscal Year 2017-18 expenditure recommendations made by the budget office during Tuesday morning’s meeting.

The court voted unanimously to approve recommended general, debt service and road and bridge funds, but Budget Officer Ashlie Koenig said these are not final numbers. Her office can, and probably will, change their recommendations throughout the budget process, she said.

For now, the county budget office has recommended a general budget of just over $172 million. Of that amount, $31.6 million is planned for road and bridges and nearly $102 million for the county’s debt service fund.

Under the recommendations, mental health services in Williamson County could get an upgrade with a funding increase to Bluebonnet Trails Community, an organization that works with communities to increase accessibility to efficient and effective care. An additional $15,000 would bring the county’s financial contributions to the organization to $100,000 over FY 2017-18.

Several county departments would receive additional funding under the approved recommendations. Facilities could gain money for infrastructure maintenance, including $1 million for roof replacement, $60,000 toward new courtroom furniture and an increase in a janitorial contract totaling $320,000. The budget office also recommended $427,000 to help improve the county’s 911 communications.

According to county staff, the budget will not be finalized until the end of August, and county commissioners are scheduled to adopt a tax rate and file an adopted budget in September.

Correction: A previous version of this story made incorrect references to fiscal year 2018-19.