Montgomery County Starts Public Forum Series On Budget Cuts | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: 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.

NPR

To Achieve Diversity In Publishing, A Difficult Dialogue Beats Silence

The American publishing industry has long been the realm of the privileged few. Lately, though, some writers of color are making their voices heard — and starting some uncomfortable conversations.
NPR

Legendary Vermont Bakers May Stop Selling Beloved Sourdough Bread

The bread that Jules and Helen Rabin have made in their fieldstone oven for four decades has a cult following in central Vermont. But this may be the last summer they sell it at the farmers market.
WAMU 88.5

IRS Seizes Financial Records For Park Southern Apartment Buildings In D.C.

A troubled housing complex that is becoming an issue in D.C.'s upcoming mayoral election had its records seized by the IRS as part of an apparent federal investigation into its finances.

NPR

Beheading Video Sets Off Debate Over How — Or Whether — To Portray It

A shocking video that shows an American journalist being beheaded by extremist militants has sparked outrage, along with arguments over whether the images should be restricted online.

Leave a Comment

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