Town Council begins 'priority-driven budget' discussions; Mayor questions extra police duties
With Councilor Arne Jorgensen saying he wanted to begin “priority-driven budget” discussions now, in order to take advantage of the experience of outgoing Mayor Pete Muldoon and Councilor Jim Stanford, the Town Council has begun weighing budgetary issues in advance of the normal January budget workshop.
“One of the reasons that I’m looking to starting the discussion now with these summary sheets with these programs is that we’re able to take the benefit of both the mayor and Councilman Stanford’s experience over the last four or eight years [respectively], because I think there’s value there and they’ve worked with these different programs for a long time,” Jorgensen said at the onset of this past Wednesday’s meeting, referring to the 39 core services and programs that comprise the town’s budget, identified by town staff.
Community Development Director Tyler Sinclair, who fostered the discussion and along with Town Manager Larry Pardee helped answer councilors’ questions, acknowledged the council would not have time to address all 39 town services. Instead, he asked the mayor and each councilor to name their top two priorities among those 39, compiled that list and opened the floor for discussion and questions of the seven programs identified. Muldoon and Vice Mayor Hailey Morton Levinson chose to only focus on one issue each.
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