The 2015 city budget is on the agenda for the Mayor and City Council in the next three months and Mayor Gere writes about it in the latest edition of her "It's Your City" newsletter to the citizens of Anacortes.
Here's the full text of what she's got to say about the budget process.
"The City’s operating budget is probably our most important work product. The budget serves a number of functions. At the most basic level it is a legal document that gives City Council the authority to incur obligations and pay expenses. It allocates resources among departments, reflecting our priorities and policies and controls how much each department may spend.
"It is my job as mayor to prepare the budget. Department heads prepare detailed proposals describing their request for projects and the expenditures that would be necessary. The proposals are filed with the city clerk, then presented to me (the mayor). I make modifications, revisions, and additions based on our municipal priorities and our revenue projections. The city clerk then submits a proposed preliminary budget setting forth the complete financial picture of the expenditures requested by department and the proposed revenue source for funding.
"My proposed budget will reflect both mine and the department’s goals and objectives. The budget document helps us to convey to you, our citizens, what our vision for Anacortes in the upcoming year. It also helps us to communicate why we have allocated the resources in a specific manner. I will present my budget message to City Council on September 22 and the proposed preliminary budgets will be reviewed by City Council on October 13 and 27. A public hearing will be held on November 3 to gather your input on the proposed budget.
"This year, City Council is having discussions on their goals and objectives for the budget. They plan to continue this practice in coming years to address funding of community priorities as well as essential services.
"The public is invited to attend all City Council meetings and workshops. Regular meetings include a public comment period."