Lycoming County's 2013 $97.1 million operating budget that keeps taxes steady for the ninth consecutive year formally was adopted by commissioners Thursday.
The budget, which is being balanced by using nearly $10.1 million of the county's available fund balance, includes about $4 million in Act 13 natural gas impact fees.
Beth A. Johnston, county director of fiscal services, said the budget routinely is balanced with established reserves, such as last year's that included a $15 million deficit. She said surpluses are created when projects are deferred for future use or don't come to fruition. They then are funneled into a reserve fund.
Commissioners also were presented with a $129,260 check from The Hartman Group, 420 William St., which represents a return on the county's workers' compensation insurance premiums.
Mark C. Sitler, company vice president, said this year also marks the ninth consecutive year that the county has received a return of premiums.
During that time, the county has received $2.16 million because of "favorable loss experience" on its workers' compensation insurance, according to Sitler.
"The bottom line is, we really strive to provide a safe working environment for our employees," Commissioner Jeff Wheeland said.
Commissioners also bid farewell to two county employees who, between them, accumulated about 70 years of service.
Connie Turner, county 911 center manager, and Tim Nelson, deputy sheriff, were recognized for their retirements this year.
John Yingling, county department of public safety director, said Turner, who previously served as the department's deputy director, has been "instrumental in the world of public safety" and has helped save lives through her work at the 911 center.
Sheriff Mark Lusk said that in addition to his duties as a deputy, Nelson played a key part in establishing the county's D.A.R.E. program and organizing the Camp Cadet program.
"His service to the county has been incredible," said Lusk. "His experience will be sorely missed."