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The process of getting a budget approved varies wildly throughout the US. In some communities, budget approvals are little more than a formality, as either the community provides little in services, the services are relatively inelastic in cost, or the community is satisfied enough with their local government that little attention is paid to the process. In others, such as the City of Asheville (I use AVL often since it is a great study in these subjects, and I work there as well), the process of budgeting is quite contentious, with innumerable requests from city departments, outside organizations, and council members, tempered by concerns and actions by other groups to advocate for their own positions or advocate against government positions – remember “conservers vs. advocates” from the book. 
For this week’s discussion, after having read the required material, I want you to think about the budget process in your own community and discuss herein. If you are wholly unfamiliar with the budget process in your community, you may say so, but you should then do some research on your community’s last budget process (i.e., read some old newspaper articles) and base your discussion on those observations. 
I am interested in hearing your thoughts/discussions on any/all of the following:
Is there a coherent budget process in your community?
Are citizens involved in the budget process?
Is the budget process amiable or controversial?
Do citizens appear to be happy with the budget choices made by their legislators?
What is your impression of the process in your community compared to others you may be aware?

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