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Friday, March 30, 2012

Alderman Young Raises Questions with Mayor's Budget

George Wenschhof

In a interview with City of Frederick Alderman Karen Young (D), she expressed her reservations of the proposed $135.7 million 2013 city budget submitted by Mayor Randy McClement (R). Young said her initial review revealed "the budget proposes an overall 22% increase (10% if city receives federal grant for airport) in expenditures and a 9% General Fund increase."

After, two years of being forced to cut the budget due to the bad economy, Young believes "when looking toward 2013, we must proceed cautiously, but wisely." Young provided me in writing, some of her thoughts, saying as she continues to "peel the onion", she will present additional suggestions.

Young was particularly concerned the proposed budget failed to take responsibility for a major financial obligation of the Other Post Employee Benefit Contribution (OPEB) which was budgeted at $2.24 million while the actuarial required contribution (ARC) is closer to $11 million.

She points out the unfunded portion of OPEB will only continue to increase and that either funding levels need to increase or the benefit structure needs to be reformed. Otherwise, Young says the mayor is just "kicking it down the road" to future generations of taxpayers.

Young added, she was frustrated because this has been brought up time and again over the 28 months they have been in office without a resolution being reached.

Alderman Young was pleased to see the 2013 budget reflects the desire of the Board of Aldermen (BoA) to finish the Carroll Creek Linear Park project. This comes after the BoA protested last fall, when Mayor McClement was prepared to leave $1 million of state grant funding on the table, rather than fully investing to finish the Carroll Creek Linear Park project.

Another area of concern was the level of funding for the Mayor's contingency fund. At $250,000, Young felt that was too high and allowed the mayor to by-step aldermanic approval, pointing out only $121,748 was spent in FY'11 and only $52,320 has been spent or committed in FY'12, none of which were emergency related expenses.

Stay Tuned...

Workshops have been scheduled for the budget and the city mayor and board will adopt the tax rate and budget on May 17.

Following is the schedule for city workshops on the budget:

April 4th - 7:00 p.m.
• Department of Public Works

April 11th – 7:00 p.m.
• Police Department

April 18th – 7:00 p.m.
• Airport
• Economic Development,
• Weinberg Center,
• Parking,
• Facilities
• Community Action Agency

April 25th – 7:00 p.m.
• Engineering
• Planning
• Parks & Recreation

May 2nd – 7:00 p.m.
• Finance/Budget & Purchasing/Human Resources
• Legal
• Mayor’s Office

May 9th – 7:00 p.m.
• Open agenda


If you have questions, you can contact the mayor and alderman by calling The City of Frederick at (301) 600-1380.

The workshops are televised on local channel 99 and can also be watched via the city website at


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1 comment:

Rocky Mackintosh said...

Another budget conscientious Young challenging the establishment is a good thing for the City. Should make for an interesting month!