There’s no time like budget time

Published 9:48 am Saturday, April 11, 2015

Clear your calendar this week for April 13, April 14 and, while you’re at it, mark down April 15 and April 16. Why? Because it’s your money that’s at stake, that’s why.

At 6 p.m. on Monday, the Franklin City Council will hear requests from the agencies and organizations it helps fund. The public hearing isn’t until June, but now’s the time to start taking notes. And should you have any concerns, there is always Citizens Time — every meeting from here until approval of the budget is sure to have some discussion on the topic.

Windsor Town Council’s Tuesday meeting at 7 p.m. shows that discussion of the budget will be on the agenda. Although it’s too soon for a formal public hearing, there’s a time set aside for residents to voice their concerns on that or any other topic. This is also a moment when you can speak to council before the members organize a work session on the issue.

On Wednesday, the Southampton County Board of Supervisors will be having a budget workshop starting at 6:30 p.m. They’ll follow that up with another work session on Wednesday, April 22, which also begins at 6:30 p.m. The Southampton County Public Hearing will be on May 18 at 7 p.m.

On Thursday starting at 5 p.m. with a public hearing, Isle of Wight county residents can comment on the Board of Supervisors’ proposed $70.38 million budget. Although no personal property or real estate tax increases are expected, there is a possibility that water and sewer rates will rise instead. Either way, it will behoove you to put in your two cents — and then some.

You might be thinking, “They’ll do what they want on Council or the Board.” True, they will if you don’t give some input. So, unless you wish to trust your town, city and county leaders with your money, we’ll see you there.