In January, the Board of County Councilors agreed to use a new budget methodology called priority based budgeting. Its goal is to link the county budget to what the council wants to achieve for the community ‒ tangible, visible results. 

Those results are the fundamental reason local government exists. Those results answer the question, “What is our organization in business to do?” Results are overarching and stand the test of time compared with short-term needs or tasks with a targeted finish line. 

The achievements are the result of county services.

In priority based budgeting, programs offered by the county are identified and associated with results. Tools that assist budget decision-making based on objective assessments and community priorities are created and used. This will lead to sound, long-term funding decisions.

Using this process, we describe the County’s unique fiscal realities, communicate the County’s fiscal health, preserve funding for programs and services that are highly valued, explore alternative levels of service, fees for service and collaborative partnerships and successfully achieve a more stable and sustainable level of fiscal health and wellness.

Results identification and definition

Identifying and defining the county’s desired outcomes, or results, is an important step toward priority based budgeting. The county councilors, other elected officials, department heads and advisory boards and committees will work together to identify and define the county’s desired results in April and May. A knowledgeable, diverse group will assure the results reflect the needs of our community and the multiple services we provide.

Examples of results from other communities include:

  • Safe community
  • Commerce and jobs
  • Well-planned and developed infrastructure
  • Inclusive, thriving and livable community

Clark County’s results may be different. Results will be identified and defined in May and June of 2017.

For questions, contact Marlia Jenkins at 360.397.6097 ext. 4405 or marlia.jenkins@clark.wa.gov