Thursday, May 15, 2014

Council Reaches Tentative Agreement on Budget

Today we tentatively passed the FY15 budget. Overall, this is a good budget that maintains fiscal responsibility while restoring some of the cuts we had to make during the recession, particularly in the areas that serve our most vulnerable.

The really good news is that we were able to provide Montgomery County Public Schools with its full funding request--achieved through a collaborative effort among the Council, the County Executive, the Board of Education and the Superintendent of Schools. We also increased funding for Montgomery College, which will provide for additional staffing and programming, especially in the STEM and biomedical fields.

I’m very pleased that we made economic development and job creation a high priority in this budget. We fully funded the Montgomery Business Development Corporation so that it can continue to provide us with an invaluable business perspective on expanding our economy. We also added new positions in the Department of Economic Development that will allow the department to enhance its programs. With these decisions, we are investing in our long-term growth. Only through job creation will our residents, and our county as a whole, be able to achieve the future we envision.

Also with an eye to helping families and businesses thrive, we decreased the proposed energy tax. While I wish we could eliminate the energy tax increase from FY11 entirely, I’m glad we at least were able to reduce it by seven percent. Times remain tough for many of our residents and businesses, so any relief we can provide will help.

One other highlight--this budget increases spending for roadway and tree maintenance, which I know will make a lot of people happy as these programs really needed the boost.

I want to thank our Council President, Craig Rice, for his steady leadership throughout the budget process. There were a lot of moving parts this year, and he did a great job managing it all. We will take our formal vote on May 22. Learn more.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If we want to spur job growth, we need to lower taxes