Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Supes to Gather Public Input on Budget

Posted By on Wed, Feb 19, 2014 at 4:50 PM

Looking to cut a projected $2 million in spending next fiscal year, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors will hold a simultaneous meeting at five locations throughout the county next month to gather input from constituents.

The board will hold a meeting in each supervisorial district at 6 p.m. on March, with each of the meetings linked through video conferencing equipment, allowing all supervisors and all attendees to hear input from each district in real time.

Earlier this month, staff reported to the board that it is projecting a $3.6 million shortfall in the county’s general fund for 2014-15 — a shortfall that includes a $1.2 million structural deficit. County staff is recommending the supervisors reduce spending by $2 million for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.

Read more about the county’s budget situation here and see the full press release announcing the March 6 meetings below.

Press release from Humboldt County:

Public Invited to Discuss 2014-15 Budget At Community Meetings

In two weeks, Humboldt County citizens will have the opportunity to tell their elected representatives where tax money should be spent at the County level. On Thursday, March 6 the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors will hold community meetings in each of the county's five districts to discuss the Fiscal Year 2014-15 Annual Budget, and the public is invited to take part in this informative and innovative meeting.

For the second year in a row, the meetings will be held simultaneously, allowing participants at every location to see and hear from each district live, via an interactive video conference. Whether you attend a meeting in Hoopa or Miranda, you will be able to talk with your district's Supervisor, who will be on-site, or address the entire Board through video. The meeting begins at 6 p.m.

"It's not always easy to get to the Courthouse, and by holding the budget meetings this way we can get out to the people and hear what they have to say," said Board Chair Rex Bohn. "We've got some hard decisions to make on the budget, and our staff is looking at ways to do that. But you may see something we don't, and we need those ideas."

At the meeting, County staff will give a presentation that outlines County revenues, expenditures, current year budget outlook, and a five-year forecast for Humboldt County's finances. Comments from the community meeting will be used to build budget proposals that better reflect community input. In June, the County Administrative Officer will make recommendations to the Board based on submittals from County departments and information gathered at this meeting.

If you are not able to attend, the entire meeting will be shown live on Access Humboldt's Channel 10 and streamed live on the County's web site.

Meetings will be held at the following locations:
Scotia Elementary School Conference Room
South Fork High School Library
Humboldt County Office of Education Annex
Hoopa High School Cafeteria
Pacific Union School Computer Lab

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Thadeus Greenson is the news editor of the North Coast Journal.

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