Our goal as a department is to serve the citizens of our great county as effectively and sincerely as we can with the funds that we are awarded each year.
Mindful of our citizen's request to be good stewards of the funds we receive, this department has undergone a massive reconstruction of staff and an implementation of a strategic operational planning process. During this reconstruction, our department alone has reduced our employee count from 74 to 48 employees since 2012, resulting is a 35% decrease in staff and overhead.
We have earnestly asked each employee to step up and take on the responsibility of the positions we consolidated due to implementing our new strategic budget plan. We are so proud to report our employees have risen to the challenge; so much so that we have doubled our productivity, despite the 26 fewer positions. This is truly a testament to the commitment the employees of the Highway Department have made to you, our citizens.
A common misconception regarding funding for the Blount County Highway Department is we receive property tax revenues to fund the services of our department. The Highway Department does not receive any property tax revenues from the county tax roll. Our two primary sources of funding come from the county portion of the gas tax and a portion of the sales tax. We receive gas tax revenues from gas purchases made only outside the city limits. We do not receive any of the additional sales tax revenues recently passed.
Those revenues go to the school system and to the General County debt service fund. We recently lost the Cable Franchise Fee revenues as they were re-allocated to the General County Fund in the 2014-2015 budget year. This unexpected decision was a significant blow to the Highway Department Capital Plan as we had planned to use the Cable Franchise revenues to begin a much needed "pay as we go" capital budget plan for replacing outdated and dangerously unsafe equipment.