October 15, 2019

Message from the County Executive: Attend a Budget Forum

County Executive Marc Elrich
When I campaigned to become County Executive, I promised, that if given the chance, I would lead a new approach to governing Montgomery County. When I took office in December 2018, the basics for the Fiscal Year 2020 budget were already in place. However, starting this year, we can start making that difference in the way Montgomery County operates—and change starts with your ideas, suggestions and vision. 

There will be five public budget forums this year. One was held in Wheaton and there are four coming up over the next month, with the next one scheduled for 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 21, at the Bethesda-Chevy Regional Services Center. It is important for our residents and members of our business community to come to these sessions to tell me and my senior staff your priorities and how you want our future Montgomery County to look.

We want to put together the FY21 budget, and all future budgets, reflecting the true needs and visions of our people—not just of budget managers. If you do not use the opportunity to speak up, it makes it harder for us to design the direction ahead. All are welcome to attend and you do not need to sign up in advance to speak.

One of the important things you will hear me talk about at these sessions, and throughout the budget process, is the need to have a two-year budget cycle. A two-year cycle will enable the County’s elected officials, directors and staff more time to implement programs because they will spend less time at budget worksessions and working to annually juggle numbers. The two-year cycle also will give community members more confidence in knowing where programs are headed, and that those programs have funding stability. Community organization members and nonprofit leaders should spend more time devoted to their programs and less time being forced to annually defend budgets.

Some of the facts and figures involved in the upcoming budget can be viewed here.

I hope this year will be the true start of a new way of governing our great County—and I hope you will come to a budget forum and help make a difference.


Upcoming Fiscal Year 2021 Operating Budget Forums:
  • Monday, Oct 21. 7 - 8:30 p.m. Bethesda Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, 4805 Edgemoor Lane, Bethesda.
  • Wednesday, Oct 30. 7 - 8:30 p.m. Silver Spring Civic Building, One Veterans Place, Silver Spring.
  • Thursday, Nov 7. 7 - 8:30 p.m. BlackRock Center for the Arts, 12901 Town Commons Drive, Germantown.
  • Wednesday, Nov 13. 7 - 8:30 p.m. Eastern Montgomery Regional Services Center, 3300 Briggs Chaney Road, Silver Spring.