One of the platforms the Democratic county council members ran on last year was transparency. This year’s proposed budget document is a testament to that commitment. Its available here, and there’s a presentation on it later this morning. Not only does it have lots of useful information, but its presented in a readable and comprehensible format. And its easily findable on the county’s website, which is far different from how the county traditionally conducted business.
A year ago, the outgoing Republicans held taxes flat by spending the reserve funds (fund balance in this document). This year, the Democrats are balancing the budget by making choices and cutting where necessary. They are reducing the money drawn from the reserve from $23 million to $764,000. Most of the cuts are coming from the social welfare, courts and parks & recreation budgets. The only line seeing a large boost is the elections line, which is more than doubling to handle new election requirements from the state. Looking through the individual budgets in the supplements at the end, many of the budgets decreasing are returning to amounts closer to the 2019 budget year after being boosted by the outgoing administration for 2020.