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4/21/2014 - 04.21.14 Record Ulman Schools Commitment Fully Funds Education Request; New Mental Health Initiative and Police Units in Budget READ MORE
4/1/2014 - 04.01.14 Howard County FY 2015 Capital Budget Invests in Education, Public Safety, the Environment and Recreation READ MORE
2/10/2014 - 02.10.14 County Executive Ulman Schedules 2nd FY15 Citizens’ Budget Hearing for March 10th READ MORE
4/1/2013 - 04.01.13 Education initiatives, downtown projects dominate Howard County FY 2014 capital budget READ MORE
4/20/2012 - 04.20.12 Ulman Proposed Budget: Record Funding for Education while Holding the Line on Property Tax READ MORE

The Budget Office

The Budget Office proposes spending levels to the County Executive based on a variety of revenue and expenditure analyses to ensure a balanced budget. In addition to preparing this annual fiscal plan and special management and financial reports for the Executive and administration, Budget staff also monitors the purchasing, personnel and other spending requests of all county government agencies.

Sec.22.400A of the Howard County Charter mandates the Howard County Office of Budget to formulate and prepare the county budget to be submitted by the County Executive to the County Council each year. A total staff of five full time and one part-time position perform this task. Howard County participates in the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) Distinguished Budget Presentation Award Program and has received this annual award for the past nine years. In addition to the budget, this office is responsible for staffing the Spending & Affordability Committee and the Economic Indicators Review Committee.
 

About the Budget Process

The County operates on a July 1 - June 30 fiscal year. By Charter, Howard County is required to have a balanced budget. The budget development process begins with revenue projections for the County for the upcoming fiscal year. These revenue estimates will determine how much money is available to provide government services, including education, public safety, public facilities, community services and other functions of government.

Developing the budget involves making choices about what local services should be funded and at what level. The public process begins each fall when the County Executive invites County residents to express their budget priorities at a public meeting. County agencies develop budget requests and submit them to the Chief Administrative Officer by early March.

A second public meeting is held in the spring to update the public on the budget in process. In April, the County Executive presents the proposed budget to the County Council. Council review of the proposed budget begins with a series of public meetings in April and May. The Council can reduce the Executive's budget, but not increase it, except in the case of the Department of Education's budget. Here the Council may restore funds back to the level requested by the school board.

The capital budget follows a similar process of hearings. In addition, the Planning Board also reviews this budget. The sites of all new or substantially changed projects are posted, the projects advertised, and the board holds a public hearing in February. After its review, the County Council finalizes the entire budget. The Council sets tax rates needed to generate enough revenue to balance the budget.

FYI…

Address:
Howard County Budget Office
3430 Court House Drive
Ellicott City, MD 21043

Office Hours:
Monday - Friday
8:00 am to 5:00 pm

Telephone/Fax
(410) 313-2077 (voice)
(410) 313-3390 (fax)

Raymond S. Wacks
Budget Administrator
rwacks@howardcountymd.gov 

Gale P. Benson
Assistant Budget Administrator
gbenson@howardcountymd.gov 

Brook Mamo
Budget Analyst
bmamo@howardcountymd.gov 

Norm T. Schnobrich
Budget Analyst
nschnobrich@howardcountymd.gov