FREDERICK COUNTY, Md. - A public meeting was held in Winchester Hall in Frederick, Md., to discuss the upcoming fiscal budget.
It was a room full of Frederick County residents as they had an opportunity to comment on what citizens want to include in the county's budget.
“Well, I think the budget is the most important tasks that we do in the county and I believe that the budget should reflect the priorities and the values of our community,” said Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner.
Officials said from choosing from education, public safety, and community and seniors, the county is able to fund $13 million.
One by one, residents had three minutes to talk in front of the Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner and the Director of the Frederick County Budget Office.
“Tonight, I am here to ask you to fully fund the Board of Education request for the FY 2018 operating budget. This is an investment in Frederick County that can not go under funded,” said Melissa Dirks, a Frederick County resident.
Officials said that they are at the point in the budgeting process where they need the public to tell them what matters in their community.
According to the Fiscal Year 2018 operating budget requests, the total of general fund budget request is over $32 million.
“The challenge we face is the needs of the public are out stripping our ability to fund them. So, this is the point where the county executive truly has to prioritize the most important and the next more important and the third most important that the budget can accomplish,” said Director of the Frederick County Budget Office, Rick Harcum.
If residents couldn't make the Monday night meeting, they have a chance to voice their concerns online. Surveys will be available for citizen input until Monday, April 3.
“For people to really share with us their thoughts, quickly, because people do not have a lot of time. A lot of people commute and work or have busy lives with their kids and they can not come in to a public meeting,” said Executive Gardner.
Frederick County Executive will present the proposed budget on April 13th at Winchester Hall.
The 2018 fiscal budget starts July 1, 2017.