: News

Montgomery County Starts Public Forum Series On Budget Cuts

Play associated audio

By Mana Rabiee

Maryland's Montgomery County Executive Ike Legget held the first of five public forums to let constituents have their say on how to prioritize $600 million dollars in proposed spending.

It's Monday night and Alex Espinosa -- who helps coordinate the county's budget -- mills outside Room A in the Upcounty Regional Services Center in Germantown.

He just gave a slide show presentation to an audience of sixty during the forum's live telecast on local TV. And now County Executive Legget is taking a mostly lively Q and A inside -- but Espinosa seems concerned.

"In the twelve years since I've been here this is the largest projected gap that the country's facing. It puts into play a lot of different things that hadn't been under consideration in the past."

The budget concerns raised by the audience represent the tapestry of any municipal government -- schools and libraries, hospitals, job creation and public safety.

But the main 'take away' from the evening is that everything is on the table to fill this budget gap.

Legget tells his audience it's either cuts all across the board or raising property taxes -- which he says he won't do.

"We're not going to do that. So we have to make some cuts and some of them will be painful. And I know and I can feel the number of people who call me and email about some of them."

The country's budget woes don't end at $600 million. Legget announced an additional $100 million in cuts may be necessary if state aid is further reduced.


Not My Job: We Ask The Choreographer Of 'The Lion King' About Lying Kings

We recorded the show in Rochester, N.Y., this week, which is home to the Garth Fagan Dance company. We'll ask acclaimed choreographer Garth Fagan three questions about really deceitful people.

Migrants Work To Hold Onto Latin Food History In Gentrifying D.C. Neighborhood

A restaurant in Washington D.C. that has long been a haven for Central American immigrants is adapting to gentrification in the neighborhood.

Graceful Losers Triumph, In Spite Of Defeat

One way or another, someone's going to lose on election night. And there's a graceful way to concede defeat, as Adlai Stevenson showed in 1952, and Al Gore did in the disputed 2000 election.

Voice Actors Strike Against Video Game Companies

The strike of the SAG-AFTRA union went into effect Friday after failed negotiations between the union's voice actors and video game employers, particularly over compensation and secrecy.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.