State budget talks: Input wanted

State budget talks begin tomorrow, and the state wants your input. A draft copy of the presentation is available here, and an edited press release follows:

The first of two public forums occurs tonight to discuss the state budget process, revenues and expenditures.

As required by state legislation, public participation is required in the development of budget goals and general prioritizing and evaluation of spending and revenue initiatives.

“We hope to engage the public in a discussion about the goals, opportunities and complexities of putting together the State budget,” Finance & Management Commissioner Jim Reardon said in a statement. “We’ll discuss revenues and expenditures and conduct a budget exercise about priorities for how state funds might be directed.”

The meetings will be held from 5:15 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. today, at various sites around Vermont, through Vermont Interactive Technologies (VIT), including Montpelier and Rutland.

Another session will occur from 4:45 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. Monday.
For more information on Vermont Interactive Technologies, a list of all the sites, and directions, go to www.vitlink.org/.

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding will moderate the forums.

Reardon will begin each forum with a 15- to 20-minute presentation about funding sources, revenues and how funds are currently spent. He will also analyze budget challenges.

The public’s comments will be considered as the governor prepares the upcoming budget recommendations, which will be submitted to the General Assembly in January.

Both meetings will have live streaming. The link will be posted on the Department of Finance and Management’s main webpage, finance.vermont.gov/.

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