From Harford County government:
The Proposed FY 2014 Budget for Harford County
On April 15, 2013, in accordance with the Charter of Harford County, I submitted the proposed FY 2014 budget to President Billy Boniface and the Harford County Council.
The budget reflects a balanced approach to governing, the realities of a fragile economy and the priorities of our community. The proposed FY 2014 budget was crafted by adhering to sound fiscal management policies that help keep Harford County operating within its means without increasing taxes.
As with prior years, there continues to be efforts by the State and Federal government to pass along to counties, unfunded mandates, additional responsibilities and unsustainable costs.
Through tough economic times the past few years, perhaps far more challenging than in several decades, we have kept our tax rate low and worked with the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, Board of Education, Harford Community College, Harford County Library and others to hold the line on spending. This has resulted in significant savings to the taxpayers, while we work hard to manage government in the most economical and efficient manner possible.
During the past several years a number of revenue streams have been adversely affected by various factors outside the control of this Administration. A lagging national economy, unfunded mandates and lower tax revenues have resulted in a lean budget, both Operating and Capital for FY 2014. The General Fund Operating Budget reflects an increase of only $6 million over the previous fiscal year’s budget.
Without question, the proposed FY 2014 Operating and Capital Budgets are one of the leanest budgets my Administration has prepared during my term in office. We have done our best with projected resources, to meet the needs of the citizens of Harford County without increasing taxes or the size of government.
Due to the fiscal realities of the proposed FY 2014 budget, there will be no wage or salary enhancements for County employees, employees of the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, or Harford County Public Library. Furthermore, the County is now required by the State to fund an additional $1.5 million for teacher pensions in the coming year. However the Administration is providing an additional $1,952,485 to the Board of Education above and beyond Maintenance of Effort.
Overall, the proposed FY 2014 budget reflects a balance of many divergent wants and needs of the County, with the ability of government to provide for them through the taxes our citizens pay. Despite these economic challenging times, Harford County remains a vibrant community full of opportunity and promise. The proposed FY 2014 budget reflects our collective values, while continuing our tradition of strong, sound financial management for the people who call Harford County home.
David R. Craig
Harford County Executive
I’d much rather hear about what this executive is doing to boost the local economy instead of praising how lean the budget is.
I agree, I would like to hear what he is doing to boost the local economy. However every county in this state has one hand tied behind its back with the policies of the state government. If I was going to start a new business, or expand the one I currently own the State of Maryland is the last place I would do it. I want to succeed not fund a corrupt state or county which ever the case may be.
bunker dweller says
Even for a fairly old school guy like myself, I would have to say that this county executive is one very depressing elected official. All he seems to say is there is no money, we have to cut deeper, the economy is too fragile, we have to cut some services, we can’t pay employees, but my administration is doing a wonderful job. However, there always seems to be enough money for certain pet projects. Every year it is the same thing from this county executive. I had to find ways to make things work with my own finances and grow. I expect the same from my elected officials. I want to hear about moving forward not digging in deeper and hoping we survive. He needs to rally the troops. Let’s start moving beyond the Depression Era mentality. The voters of this county are getting tired of the same old song and dance. We need to solve the problems rather than say we can’t because it is too hard, or it will hurt my political career. Let’s find a way to do it and get it done. If not, I would suggest – what political career?
Agree completely! It seems he equates a lean budget with doing a wonderful job. So much stock was put in BRAC which never materialized to the predicted levels. Epic fail.
With all the poor mouth empty pockets talk how is it the county paid 1.3 million for the old preston farm in Jarrettsville? which now sits empty. How and why do these purchases happen? Never saw a for sale sign on the property and finding anything about the transaction is nearly impossible.
And what is up with all the county owned and maintained rec complexes that never seem to be used? Did we really need the one they are currently building off 155 in Churchville?
same old says
How about the 2.9 million he paid to get an over priced piece of property for a waste transfer station that was never needed? Of course there is enough money in the budget for a new high school in Harve de Grace.
The very high school in his hometown which the BOE wasn’t for and the state doesnt support….now that is pure nonsense that he pushed that.
In my opinion this CE hasn’t done anything to improve our local government and probably has done nothing terribly bad to hurt it either. He is careful not to mess with the Tea Party and clearly his eye is looking at Annapolis. Memo to the CE, you don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell after basically leaving the teachers, public sector employees and deputies without raises yet again. This makes 6 out of 8 yrs in office that he hasn’t proposed a salary increase for the rank n file. He has clearly stayed with his Tea bagging friends hoping to not piss them off by raising even a penny in taxes. In his simple economic theory, prices never go up for services and people don’t get raises either unless you are his deputy chief who did get a raise.