Friday, October 2, 2015

2015 Budget season - UPDATED 10/13

UPDATE 10/13: Montgomery Township has announced their schedule of topics to be discussed during a series of budget workshops later this month.
The board has already voted to schedule budget workshop meetings for Oct. 20, 21, 22 and 28, with Oct. 29 as a backup date. All meetings will start at 6:30 p.m. and run until roughly 8:30-9 p.m.
Topics for each of those sessions have now been announced:
Oct. 20 - budget overview, general engineering projects, traffic engineering, Public Works, Parks
Oct. 21 - Environmental Advisory Committee, Fire Department of Montgomery Township and Department of Fire Services, Sewer Authority, Planning/zoning, Shade Tree commission
Oct. 22 - Community & Recreation Center and Autumn Festival, Police, IT and Finance
Oct. 28 - Administration, personnel, conclusion.
The supervisors are tentatively scheduled to adopt a preliminary budget on Nov. 9 to start the formal public review period, and adopt the final budget on Dec. 14. If any change is made during the drafting process that alters one item by more than 25 percent or the total budget by more than ten percent, the budget must be re-advertised for another 20 days, according to township staff.
All of those meetings will be held at the township administration building, 1001 Stump Road; for more information visit or follow @MontTwp on Twitter.

UPDATE 10/9: Towamencin has adjusted their budget schedule due to the cancellation of an Oct. 7 budget workshop meant to discuss several township departments.
With the Oct. 7 meeting canceled, Oct. 21 will now mark the start of budget talks, with topics on the to-do list including the township Police, Fire Department, emergency management, Code enforcement, and the Morgan Log House.
Several other departments originally scheduled for Oct. 7 will now be discussed on Oct. 18: Parks and Recreation, Public Works, the Towamencin Pool, and the long-term capital budget and fee schedule.
A budget workshop on Nov. 4 will discuss remaining departments: Finance, IT, economic development, administration, and sewer.
Adoption of a tentative 2016 budget, originally scheduled for Nov. 10, will now take place during a Nov. 18 budget meeting.
The 20-day window for public inspection now means that instead of final adoption of the budget on Dec. 9, the budget will now be adopted on Dec. 23 at the supervisors' work session. For more info visit


It's that time of year again, one of the most important and yet unappreciated for local governments - budget season!

Each of our local municipalities has at least one, and usually a series, of meetings to go over the last year's budget and plan the coming year.

Typically, each department (parks, finance, police, code, public works, etc) will submit a draft budget containing everything they would like to see included in the next year, and over the next several meetings their board will cut that down to make ends meet.

Depending on their schedules, each of the municipalities handles the early weeks of budget season differently, but all of them have to approve a draft budget in November, make it available for public comment, and approve the final version in December.

Each municipality schedules their budget talks differently: Lansdale Borough began talking about the expenditure side of their budget in Sept. 2 council committee meetings, and will talk about revenues in their Oct. 7 committees next week. Those committee meetings start at 7 p.m. on Oct. 7 at the borough municipal building, 1 Vine Street, and the draft budget could be adopted Nov. 18 and the final version Dec. 16.

Montgomery Township's board had a choice between several possible budget meeting dates, and said they'll hold their workshops on Oct. 20, 21, 22 and 28 with the 29th as a backup date. Those meetings start at 6:30 p.m. and tend to run to 8:30-9pm, and (SEE ABOVE FOR UDPATE) which department goes on which date will depend on when engineers and professional consultants are available, according to their finance director. Those meetings are held at their administration building, 1001 Stump Road, and follow them on Twitter @MontTwp or visit www.MontgomeryTwp for details on which meeting is when.

Upper Gwynedd tends to hold one all-night budget meeting to discuss their entire wish-list, and last year's ran from 5 p.m. to roughly 11:30 p.m. - eat something beforehand! That meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 27 at their administration building, 1 Parkside Place.

Hatfield Township holds an annual goal-setting meeting - which used to be at the start of the calendar year, until they realized it made more sense to hold it while drafting the budget - and then keep up talks on the budget during board workshop meetings. The budget-only meeting has been scheduled for Nov. 11 and the other commissioners' meetings are schedule for Nov. 4 and 18 (which should include a formal budget presentation) and December 2 and 16, all at their admin building, 1950 School Road.

North Wales Borough is a trickier case, since they are still looking for their next full-time borough manager. Last year, the former manager had a budget complete in mid-November before he left to work in a larger town, but this year's schedule is still to be determine. Borough council has said they hope to have a new manager hired by Nov. 1, and their council meetings are scheduled for Nov. 10 and 24 and Dec. 8 and 15, all at the borough municipal building, 300 School Street.

And last but certainly not least, Towamencin's supervisors have scheduled several budget workshops, to be held at 7 p.m. on Oct. 7 and 21 and Nov. 4. Those will go alongside supervisors meetings at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 10 and 24 and Dec. 9 and 23, all of which will be held at their township building, 1090 Troxel Road.

Let me know if I'll see you at any of these budget meetings!

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