I was pleased to see a good turnout of Madison residents at the Community Budget Conversation held recently at the Central Library.
This year's conversation was unique, as it added an interactive element. Residents were given broad service areas including public safety, infrastructure/public works, neighborhood & economic development, internal services, and youth programming. They were then asked to determine how they would disperse $1,000 among these service areas by voting on their smart phones. The results were shown to the audience in real time in the form of a bar graph.
The budget conversation was productive and I have a good idea as to where residents would like to see funds go in the 2016 budget. It will be a challenging year, but it is helpful to get ideas and suggestions from Madison residents as I work with City staff and the Common Council to draft our 2016 spending plan.