As you know, the City Council is in the process of developing our city budget. We have held a few workshops to date and have more scheduled through the end of May.
Unfortunately, the city is faced with trying to maintain its services and programs with less revenue from the state for another year. Over the years, necessary cuts and reductions have been made in Augusta’s budget, and now we are at a critical point of nowhere to cut without adverse effects. Our roads are an evident sign of recent budget reductions. But our public safety is stretched thin; our schools are in need of investment; along with much of our infrastructure; and many of our services are falling behind without the appropriate funds.
Of course, the financial challenges of trying to get by with less in city government is similar to many households in Augusta and around the state and country. We are all feeling squeezed, which is why addressing the many needs of the city budget is not easy when it comes at a cost to the taxpayers. I am very mindful of this.
So, how do we strike a balance to keep Augusta operating and moving forward, without overwhelming the taxpayers of the city? I do not have the answer to this question, but I do believe there has to be a balance where we meet in the middle.
I realize there are different thoughts on this subject and I would like to hear from you. As the City Council spends every week going over each department, line by line, it is helpful to know what the people of Augusta want and expect from our city government.
Below is more information about the proposed city budget.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and to provide any feedback. It is greatly appreciated.