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MoCo's Budget Shortfall Persists

There was good news and bad news from Montgomery County's budget writers this afternoon.

Budget director Joe Beach reported to the council's fiscal committee that the size of the projected shortfall for fiscal 2010 remains the same - about $251 million. But that is largely because budget writers used a smaller increase in projected spending to calculate the gap.

"We didn't want to paint a rosy picture, but to show that even under a more restrained expenditure scenario, the fiscal challenge was still going to be a big problem," Beach said.

Instead of using the 10-year average annual spending increase of about 8 percent, budget writers started with 3.7 percent - the increase from fiscal 2009 to fiscal 2009. They then added obligations, such as rising gas and energy costs for a total projected increase of 5.7 percent.

The full County Council gets a primer on the fiscal outlook at tomorrow's session. Read more here from Staff Director Steve Farber's memo.

By Ann Marimow  |  September 22, 2008; 3:36 PM ET
Categories:  Ann Marimow , Montgomery County  
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Next: O'Malley: No Plans to Shift Teacher Pension Costs


Thanks $3,200,000,000 ICC toll road to nowhere!

Posted by: Donny | September 22, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for all those 14% annual budget increases that were passed in previous years. But the party is over now so it's time to roll back those increases we could never afford in the first place. Leaner times are coming and both county council members and county residents should get used to that idea.

Posted by: Afpre42 | September 23, 2008 6:53 AM | Report abuse

Where is the cost cutting? This must be done by: cutting programs, expense accounts, construction, ICC, new hires, more furloughs, and yes, eliminating the precious raises unions are fighting so hard to hang on to which the county cannot afford.

In case Leggett and Co. don't know, the stock market has tanked, so has the real estate market here in MD. Their fuzzy math looks like greed and corruption. People like me are getting angry. Vote B.

14% annual budget increases passed in recent years are sending the county deeper and deeper in the hole. This is not sustainable. Leggett will be a one term wonder and so will O'Malley.

Posted by: Mary Anne | September 23, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Help is on the way. Vote for Question B which makes it more difficult for the council to exceed the charter property tax limit.

Within the past year we have had a 14% increase in the property tax, a 10% increase in the county energy tax, up to a 52.6% increase in the state income tax, a 20% increase in the sales tax, a 20% increase in the car tax, a 18% increase in the corporate tax, school development taxes, transit development taxes, the largest water bill increase in 15 years, the largest Metro fare increase in several years, up to 75% electricity rate increases, $4 gas and milk and a tanking stock market. Social security recipients got a 2.3% raise in 2008.

Yet, our county officials have been continuously showing contempt for the average man or woman on the street. They just spent $12 million that the school system did not spend last year. They talk about "deficits" in their budgets which are always much larger than the year before. Look for a 15% to 20% increase in property taxes next year to satisfy their greed. Vote for B to Save Our Homes1

Plus, they have put Question A on the ballot which seeks to repeal easily-approved-by-the-voters prohbitions on garbage dumps and dewage sludge trenching in residential zones. Vote Against A!

Posted by: Robin Ficker, Broker Robin Realty | September 23, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I had to pay two of their infernal new taxes today. I ordered 300 gallons of heating oil from a company in Frederick County. But they charged me a Montgomery county energy tax of 15 cents a gallon to deliver it to Montgomery County. Plus I renewed the registration for my Jeep Liberty. It cost $180! Wait till they start trenching the sewage sludge like they did in the late 1970's and early 80's to save money. Your kids and dogs will be coming home with raw sewage sludge on their feet. Plus, the county intends to build a giant garbage dump in the county when their contract with West Virginia expires in 2012. Previously, they tried to put a garbage dump where the Avenel Golf Course is today. I am not making this up!

Posted by: Robin Ficker, Broker Robin Realty | September 23, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Correction: the county heating oil tax was 6.7 cents a gallon or $20 for 300 gallons.

Posted by: Robin Ficker, Broker Robin Realty | September 23, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

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