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Montgomery County Council Committee Meetings on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, 2024

MARYLAND, January 30 - For Immediate Release: Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Ad hoc Executive Director Recruitment Committee scheduled to meet in a closed session, Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee to review spending affordability guidelines and OLO report examining the County's Cable Communications Fund

The ad hoc Executive Director Recruitment Committee is scheduled to meet in a proposed closed session on Wednesday, Jan. 31 at 1 p.m. under Maryland Code, General Provisions Article, Section 3-305(b)(1)(i). The topic is the appointment of an employee over whom the Council has jurisdiction.

The Government Operations and Fiscal Policy (GO) Committee will meet on Thursday, Feb. 1 at 9:30 a.m. to review the County’s Operating Budget Spending Affordability Guidelines. In addition, the committee will discuss the Office of Legislative Oversight (OLO) Report 2023-12 and the Connect Montgomery Alliance Strategic Plan.

The members of the GO Committee include Chair and Council Vice President Kate Stewart, Council President Andrew Friedson and Councilmember Sidney Katz.

More detail on each agenda item is provided below. 

Ad Hoc Committee on Executive Director Recruitment

Proposed Closed Session: The ad hoc committee on Executive Director Recruitment intends to meet in closed session to discuss the appointment, employment, assignment, promotion, discipline, demotion, compensation, removal, resignation or performance evaluation of appointees, employees, or officials over whom it has jurisdiction, under Maryland Code, General Provisions Article §3-305(b)(1)(i). The topic is the appointment of an employee over whom the Council has jurisdiction.

The purpose of this ad hoc Council committee is to evaluate the role and responsibilities of the Council's executive director position and make decisions about the recruitment process. The work of this temporary committee coincides with Council Executive Director Marlene Michaelson's decision to leave her post in 2024.

Spending Affordability Guidelines for the FY25 Operating Budget

Review: The GO Committee will review Spending Affordability Guidelines for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Operating Budget. The committee is expected to review the proposed options, including public comments, and vote on its recommendations to the full Council.

The Montgomery County Code requires the Council to specify the following when adopting the spending affordability guidelines for the operating budget: a ceiling on the funding from ad valorem real property tax revenues; a ceiling on the aggregate operating budget; and separate budget allocations for Montgomery County Government, the Montgomery County Board of Education, Montgomery College, the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, debt service and current revenue funding of capital projects. As part of this process the Council will consider the condition of the economy, the level of economic activity in the County, trends in personal income and the impact of economic and population growth and projected revenues.

The December fiscal plan update showed higher than projected revenues for FY23 and FY24, but continued projections of a mild recession beginning in 2024. The County’s total tax revenues in FY23 were more than $229 million greater than budgeted, resulting in general fund reserve levels at 16.8 percent. FY24 total revenues are estimated to be more than $225 million greater than the FY24 approved budget. Total revenues projections for FY25-29 are relatively unchanged from June and the revenue changes for FY23 and FY24 will result in a large influx of one-time revenue to the County.

The Council will review the GO Committee’s recommendations on Feb. 6. The deadline for final Council action is Feb. 13.

Follow Up on OLO Report 2023-12 and Discussion of Connect Montgomery Alliance Strategic Plan

Review: The GO Committee will follow-up on in its Jan. 18 meeting to review OLO Report 2023-12, From Wayne's World to YouTube: Communications Funding in an Era of Diminishing Cable Returns and discuss the County's Cable Communications Fund. The report, which was requested by the Council, examines the structural soundness of the Cable Fund and the sufficiency of projected future year cable television revenues to continue to support government telecommunications and public information activities. At this meeting the committee will receive comments from the Executive Branch and the Connect Montgomery Alliance (CMA) about OLO Report 2023-12 and receive an overview of the CMA’s FY25 strategic workplan.

The Committee meeting schedule may change from time to time. View the current Council and Committee agendas, Council staff reports and additional information on items scheduled for Council review on the Council website.

Council and committee meetings are streamed live on the Council’s web page via YouTube and on Facebook Live and can be watched on County Cable Montgomery on Xfinity/RCN 6 HD 996/1056, Fios 30, and on the CCM live stream.

Release ID: 24-038
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 240-777-7926, Benjamin Sky Brandt 240-777-7884