FARMINGTON — Franklin County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a combined $10.6 million budget for county government and the jail for 2024-25.

The amount includes an additional $100,000 to comply with a U.S. Department of Labor law in connection to minimum wage and overtime rule for exempt – salaried workers, which goes from $43,888 in July  to $58,656 on Jan. 1, 2025, county Administrator Amy Bernard said Tuesday.

The package will go back to the Budget Advisory Committee. To accept the commissioners changes, six out of nine members must vote to override the commissioners’ plan.

The committee’s proposal is $10.6 million, which does not include the $100,000 to comply with the Department of Labor’s new rule.

Bernard said county officials did not receive a letter on the change until about 15 days ago. If they don’t add it, it will mean a bigger increase next year, she said.

Commissioners voted to include 3% for cost-of-living raises for nonunion employees; the advisory committee included a 4% increase.


Commissioner Terry Brann of Wilton said that is illegal, because only commissioners have that authority.

The committee’s package also included three more months’ pay, for a total of six months, for training a new employee for the Register of Probate’s Office. Commissioners included three months of pay for training.

The deputy register plans to retire but has not given a date to county commissioners.

There are also some differences in what was approved for the nonprofit social services or infrastructure agencies.

Commissioners believed their unanimous vote meant the budget would not have to go back to the committee for approval.

However, Fenwick Fowler of Farmington pointed out that state law says that after the committee holds a public hearing on the budget proposal, “the advisory committee shall adopt a final budget and transmit that budget to the county commissioners.”


Commissioners may not further increase, decrease, alter or revise the budget adopted by the committee, except by unanimous vote. If the adopted budget is changed by the commissioners, the committee may reject the change by a two-thirds vote of members. Those actions are final and are not subject to further action by either commissioners or the committee.

Commission Chairman Lance Harvell of Farmington said the budget is being set by people who are not elected county officials, but when it comes to setting taxes, it will be commissioners who sign the commitment.

Fowler pointed out that committee members are selectmen chosen by their peers to serve on the committee.

A meeting of the Budget Advisory Committee had not been set as of Tuesday.

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