Guilford County Manager Mike Halford has worked on the Guilford County budget plenty of times before – he was the county’s budget director for 14 years before becoming county manager.
However, this year the budget is like no other for him because this time he’s the one who will call the shots as to what goes in, and what stays out of, the manager’s recommended budget.
At the next meeting of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners, on Thursday, May 20, Halford will present that budget to his boss, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners.
The Board of Commissioners will get the final say on Guilford County’s fiscal 2021-2022 budget. Though the commissioners always make some changes before adopting a final county budget, the vast majority of that budget always remains whatever the county manager decided it would be.
Halford said the experience is different as county manager than as budget director.
“Before, I would come up with a group of things and let somebody else decide on them. I’m at that point now where I can’t just walk away and leave it to someone else.”
“It’s different,” he said of being manager. “But it’s not super different.”
Halford said all those budgets he’s done in the past are a big help.
He also said another thing that helps his decision making process is that the commissioners have adopted goals and values for the county and that helps him prioritize.
“I think that from the retreat and last work session, the board is pretty clear on the values,” he said.
Whatever Halford proposes, no tax increase is expected in the final county budget. Chairman of the Board of Commissioners Skip Alston has stated several times that there will not be a property tax increase in the 2021-2022 county budget.