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Frequently Asked Questions

Why were Budget Roundtables held?

How were Roundtables designed?

Why was a special Business/Industry Roundtable offered?

Will comments from the Roundtables be attributed to participants in the final report for City Council?

How can I learn more about the City's budget challenges?

Answers

Why were Budget Roundtables held?

Midland City Council contracted with the independent firm of Kezziah Watkins to conduct seven Roundtable discussions from October 7-10, 2008. The discussions provided citizens an opportunity for open dialogue with City administrators and, more importantly, other community members regarding budget priorities and the short- and long-term goals of this community.

The educational opportunity of learning how City services operate and are funded, mixed with a discussion of citizens' values and views of this community, will provide City administrators and City Council with a unique understanding of what is important to Midlanders.

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How were Roundtables designed?

Each Roundtable lasted approximately three hours and consisted of a cross section of 15-30 city residents. Sessions began with a brief presentation on current City services and how City revenues are generated and spent. A facilitator then led Roundtable participants in a discussion designed to explore ideas on budget priorities and long- and short-term budget-related topics.

Kezziah Watkins is in the process of compiling all of the meeting notes and preparing a summary of conclusions and common themes. This summary report, along with all of the verbatim comments from the sessions, will be presented to City Council in December 2008. The report will help the Council establish goals and priorities for the 2009-10 City budget.

As it is with a growing number of progressive cities, your City Council believes that when it comes to making difficult decisions about City services, the preferences and opinions of Midland citizens are important to obtain and consider.

Important Note: Comments or opinions expressed during the discussion were NOT attributed to any one person in the final report. This allowed all participants to feel free to state their true beliefs and opinions. It is the City’s goal to determine the needs of the community while insuring that citizens' anonymous voices were heard.

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Why was a special Business/Industry Roundtable offered?

Because Midland business owners and local industry leaders are also a vital part of this community with needs that differ from residential property owners, a special Business Roundtable was held. This session was geared to identify the needs and priorities of local industry leaders and those who own and operate businesses in the city of Midland.

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Will comments from the Roundtables be attributed to participants in the final report for City Council?

The City Council will receive summary and verbatim reports from each of the many input opportunities; however, comments or opinions expressed during discussion will not be attributed to any one person.

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How can I learn more about the City's budget challenges?

One of the best ways to familiarize yourself with the City's financial challenges is through an MGTV-5 special, "Community Question: Budget Challenges", accessible via on-demand video (see link at left). (Windows Media Player 9 and a broadband connection to the Internet required to view video.)

Additional resource material can be found via the links at left.

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