Other potential uses
The money potentially could go toward paying off the county’s long-term debt of approximately $3.4 million.
Marley said the county has one outstanding bond issue of $2,092,666 taken out for capital improvements at both the Crawford County Courthouse and county-owned former Talon Inc. property in Meadville.
There is another smaller bond issue of $656,013 for demolition work at the Talon Inc. property.
The county also has a long-term note of $637,610 taken out for roof work at the Quality Living Center in Saegertown.
The county’s three commissioners all said they’d like to keep much of the excess worker’s compensation money invested and just use the interest generated from investment of the money toward any projects.
“I’d want to keep the principal intact,” Lynch said. “The county’s never invested money in a way to go toward a specific line item (in the budget).”
Possible uses Lynch sees include upgrading the county’s computer systems or more energy efficient windows on the courthouse.
“There are still some unknowns, but the budget will give us a better idea,” he said. “The goal is not to look at just 2014 but at least three years out.”
Allen agrees with Lynch that the county’s technology systems may need upgraded.
“Not only for courthouse use, but for the general public,” Allen said. “They may not be things that pay back immediately, but they should make employees more productive or the courthouse more consumer-friendly.”
“We have to make sure the money spent on any kind of project hopefully shows some type of return — whether it’s streamlining operations or have a pay back,” he said.
Weiderspahn said the excess workers’ compensation funds could be put toward capital improvements.
“I want to try to keep most of it in there and not touch the principal,” Weiderspahn said. “We will have things (to buy) like computers and other major items. We don’t have a capital (improvement) budget.”
Keith Gushard can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.