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A little more than $2,300 from every man, woman and child in Harford County is what the county government is proposing to spend in the fiscal year that begins July 1, and this week is when the people who provide that money have the opportunity to say if they like how it’s to be spent.

The Harford County Council is holding public hearings on the proposed $578 million budget today (Wednesday) at Aberdeen High School and Thursday at Fallston High School. Start time for both hearings is 6:30 p.m.

Think your taxes are too high? You can show up to say so. Think your services are too few? You can show up to say that, too.

And something that’s more possible in the computer age than in years past: you can go to the county government Web site, www.harfordcountymd.gov, and check out how much the county spends on anything and everything. Be prepared, though, the budget documents are contained in several documents totaling thousands of pages.

This wonder of modern technology means anyone with enough time and determination can go through the budget and make very specific suggestions about cuts and changes.

Having access to information and making informed public policy decisions based on that information are what a representative democracy such as ours is all about. If you’ve got the time and inclination, get out there and participate.


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