Jefferson County Commission to organize budget workshops

Jefferson County Commission to organize budget workshops

[box type=”info” icon=”none”]The League of Women Voters is encouraging all members to attend the county budget workshop February 9 at 7 pm in the County Commission meeting room.[/box]

JAN 20, 2017
MARY STORTSTROM, Staff Writer,, The Journal

CHARLES TOWN — At the request of the League of Women Voters of Jefferson County, the Jefferson County Commission agreed to hold a budget workshop on Feb. 9.

Eleanor Finn, an observer with the League of Women Voters of Jefferson County who attends all county commission meetings, said the commission held a series of “Budget 101” workshops in fall 2015.

“There was a guest speaker, Ora Ash with the state auditor’s office. He told the public what the office looks for when auditing. The county’s financial director at the time, Tim Stanton, also went over budget trends and took questions from the public,” Finn said. “The room was packed; it was the most people who had ever come to a budget meeting.”

Finn said the League of Women Voters of Jefferson County would like the commission to hold a similar workshop in February, as the county commission prepares the budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

Finn said the workshops were useful to the public because budget trends, as well as revenue and expenditures, were explained to the public in an understandable way. She said packets of information were available to the public at the workshops in 2015.

“Knowing how tax dollars are budgeted and spent should be of concern to all residents (of Jefferson County) and voters,” she said. “The public should know the good news and the bad news so citizens know what (the commissioners) are grappling with.”

County Administrator Stephanie Grove said the heads of all departments in the county will be making budget presentations to the county commissioners on Feb. 13. She said the public workshop would be most effective if it is held before budget presentations start. This year, financial director Michelle Gordon will present budget information, Grove said.

Commissioner Josh Compton suggested the budget workshop be held in the evening so more members of the public can attend.

The budget workshop has been scheduled for Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. in the County Commission meeting room, located on the lower level of the Old Charles Town Library, 200 E. Washington St. in Charles Town.