Johnson County has the lowest mill levy of any county in Kansas, yet its citizens enjoy the highest level of services anywhere in the state or region. I believe the County Commission must balance the taxpayers’ ability to pay with the desire for services that is increasing as a result of a growing population and shifting demographics.
The recession of 2008 is behind us, but employment and economic trends continue to lag behind customary levels for Johnson County. Budget considerations for county government should assure that the county fulfills its role in the recovery of the local economy.
In preparing the county’s budget, my priorities are as follows:
- Maintain services at their current levels of excellence.
- Where funding levels have not kept pace with desire for service, explore additional revenue sources, including partnerships with private and nonprofit sectors.
- Support compensation plans that reward meritorious staff performance and avoid unnecessary reductions in critical areas of our work force.
- Strategically pursue options for expansion of services and facilities that will maximize use of current low costs in order to meet long-term needs.
- Minimize additional revenue increases.