Mayor Rawlings-Blake Announces Launch of Budget Live! Website
Wednesday Dec 17th, 2014
Mayor Rawlings-Blake Announces Budget Live! Website, Encourages Citizen Engagement, Promotes Transparency in Budget Process
Mayor, budget director say interactive website will help in setting priorities in light of projected FY 15 and FY 16 shortfalls
BALTIMORE, Md. (December 17, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake was joined by Baltimore City Budget Director Andrew Kleine to announce Budget Live!, a new interactive website designed to encourage Baltimore City residents to participate in the budgeting process with City leaders.
"City government is most effective when it receives input from the citizens it represents," said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. "When residents are involved in the process, we can make better, more informed choices. As we continue to grow the city, we will continue to offer tools like Budget Live! that increase transparency and enable residents to actively participate in making Baltimore a stronger city."
Based on first quarter results, the Bureau of the Budget & Management Research is projecting a $15 million deficit for fiscal year 2015 and a $30 million shortfall for the Fiscal 2016 budget. As state and local officials work to balance their budgets and make the necessary difficult decisions to ensure a fiscally sound future, the website will give residents an opportunity to participate in the fiscal year 2016 budget process.
"We are excited for citizens to visit Budget Live! and tell us their priorities for how tax dollars are spent," said Mr. Kleine. "We also encourage citizens to follow our @baltimorebudget twitter feed and participate in the mayor's budget workshops next month."
The Budget Live! website features engaging budget resources, including:
- An interactive look at the City's current budget and expenditures
- Details on recent successes and potential financial hurdles ahead for fiscal year 2016
- An opportunity to discuss budget issues with other citizens and ask questions about the budget
- A budget simulator that will allow users to try their hand at balancing the budget
The budget planning simulator will be available until January 30, 2015. City officials will take citizen feedback into consideration when formulating Fiscal 2016 budget recommendations.
Citizens are encouraged to visit budget.baltimorecity.gov and click on Budget Live!