Now Accepting Board Nominations

If you have longed for the opportunity to get more involved with the North Carolina Local Government Budget Association (NCLGBA), we hope the timing is right! Please take a moment to consider joining the best Board around.

The NCLGBA needs your help growing and improving as an organization to stay true to our vision and mission. As we continue to provide the skill development, knowledge sharing, and networking our members need to succeed professionally; we are always looking for members who want to do more and carry on the torch. Helping advance the local government profession by serving on the NCLGBA Board is an excellent opportunity to contribute.  We have five great opportunities coming up in FY 20-21.

  • 3rd Vice President and Conference Co-Chair (1-year term/5-year commitment)
  • Secretary (3-year term)
  • Treasurer (3-year term)
  • Municipal At-Large (2-year term)
  • County At-Large (2-year term)

All members are expected to:

Work toward specific Strategic Plan goals
Commit to attending all conferences during their terms
Commit to attending all board meetings and conference planning sessions during their terms
Assist with conference planning
Assist with road shows

Nominations are due by March 27, 2020. Please e-mail Michelle Daniels, NCLGBA President, if you are interested, know someone who may be interested, and/or want to learn more.

Materials and further instructions will be e-mailed directly to you if you are accepting a nomination or self-nominating. To be considered for the Board, submissions will be due by April 10, 2020.

NCLGBA Visits UNC, App State

This past week, NCLGBA members visited the Master of Public Administration programs at UNC-Chapel Hill and Appalachian State University. Margaret Murphy, Senior Budget and Management Services Analyst, Wake County, provided a recap of the presentation at UNC-Chapel Hill:

The presentation focused on what it is like to work in the budget office, using a lot of real examples. We started with an overview of the purposes of a budget, the roles in the budget process, and the structure of budget offices. We described budget’s role as communicating between departments, the manager, and the board, and highlighted that curiosity and wanting to solve problems are attributes of a good budget analyst. We gave a brief overview of the North Carolina context, and services, revenue sources, and expenditures in municipalities and counties.

Aaron describes the budget cycle.

Most of the presentation was describing the budget cycle and the major activities we work on during each phase (using examples from Wake and City of Durham). For the planning phase, we shared examples of budget milestones and calendars and developing and communicating the base budget. For the development phase, we shared information about the requests Wake and Durham receive and the budget role in evaluating these requests. Aaron Brown, Budget and Management Analyst, Wake County, led an exercise where we shared examples of business cases departments submit with budget requests and walked through the initial steps/questions budget staff would ask. For the approval phase, we shared examples of budgeting messaging (recommended budget presentations) and highlighted how data used in business cases is then used in communicating the budget to the board. For the implementation phase, we talked about business plan and other status meetings.

Pat shares about other budget office duties, including budget’s role in strategic planning.

Then we shared examples of other things we do. Pat Madej, Senior Budget and Management Analyst, City of Durham, shared information on Durham’s DSAP meetings, I talked about Wake’s board initiatives and being the staff lead on the Pre-K initiative, Pat discussed Durham’s participatory budgeting and program evaluation approach to budget requests. We then looked at examples of Pat’s analysis on sales tax refunds and my work projecting Wake County’s hospitality tax revenue.

Then we talked about NCLGBA and how much we love it!

NCLGBA presenters Pat, Aaron and Margaret (front) with the UNC-Chapel Hill MPA class.

The following day, Brian Pahle, Assistant City Manager, City of Hendersonville, and Brian Barnett, Deputy County Manager, Pitt County, headed to the mountains to provide a similar budgeting overview to students at Appalachian State.

Every good road trip (and budget presentation) starts with a cup of coffee.

 

App MPA students engaged in the presentation.

 

Co-presenter Brian Barnett (right) with professor Dr. Bob Eskridge (left) and MPA student Brad Moody.

 

Familiar names on the scholarship plaque, including co-presenter Brian Pahle and other NCLGBA members.

Thank you to all of our volunteer presenters for sharing your time with the next generation of local government budget professionals!

NCLGBA campus visits support our Strategic Plan goal to “increase student interest and participation within NCLGBA in order to advocate for the budgeting profession and to help create and foster the next generation of local government leaders.” If you would like us to visit your program, class, or student group, please email us at admin@nclgba.org.

Summer 2020 Conference Registration and Room Block Now Open

Registration and room block for the 2020 Summer Conference is now open!

Registrations can be made by credit card or check. Every attendee must fill out their own registration form. More detailed directions for registration can be found on the Conference Information page.

Reservations for the conference hotel – the Double Tree by Hilton Atlantic Beach Oceanfront – can be made online or by phone at 252-240-1155 using group name NC Local Government Budget Association and code GBA. Cancellations must be received 72 hours prior to hotel stay. Additional information can be found on the Conference Information page.

The deadline for both conference registration and reserving at the group rate is Tuesday, June 23, 2020. Continue to watch the website and listserv for future 2020 Summer Conference news and updates!

#NCLGBA19 Recap Series: Checking the Boxes for a Successful Conference

Over the next few weeks, we will be featuring reflections on the 2019 Winter Conference. If you would like to share your experience, please email admin@nclgba.org.

Our third #NCLGBA19 Conference Recap comes from Rusty Mau, Winter 2019 Conference Scholarship Recipient and Budget Analyst, Buncombe County

Consider the last conference you attended (other than the NCLGBA winter conference).  After the conference, you probably received a survey that asked, “Would you recommend this conference to a colleague?”  The answer is not always “strongly agree”.  When I think about the NCLGBA winter conference, I “strongly agree” that every budget professional in North Carolina should attend!

The conference started on a high note, with NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver sharing why planning is critical in the 21st Century.  He discussed the “clash of values” between the 20th and 21st centuries and encouraged us to consider the importance of density in our communities.  The family unit of yesterday is not the family unit of tomorrow, Silver shared, as an estimated 25 million single family homes will be on the market by 2030 with no buyer.  How will a public trend towards density align with the powerful forces of NIMBYism?  What are the tax implications of density?  These questions came to my mind as Silver helped us peek into the future.

Throughout the conference, I came back to the question of “why?”  In The Value Beyond Strategy and Data, Mary Vigue with the City of Raleigh said Raleigh’s goal with innovation and performance management is to empower people to ask why.  In Jeff Richardson’s session on High Performance Leadership, we learned you must understand why managers, boards, and colleagues are motivated and successful in order to be successful yourself.  In the screening of All the Queen’s Horses, we saw what can happen when we don’t ask “why” when something doesn’t add up.  For local government to continue to improve, all employees must be empowered to both ask why and understand why.  This mutual understanding of why transcends innovation, routine operations, and even ethical behavior.

Before I “strongly agree” to recommend a conference, I must be able to check two boxes: solid content and ample time for valuable networking (plus, of course, good food).  While I thoroughly enjoyed the content, the networking opportunities were the highlight of our time.  In Buncombe County, for example, we are drafting a new grants policy.  I was able to ask several jurisdictions about their practices and provide a firm foundation for our first draft.  The conference also included opportunities for speed coaching, budget-focused networking, and informal conversation.  I am no “master networker”, but I truly appreciated the opportunity to learn from other attendees.  The diversity of expertise among attendees made the conference impactful.

When I reflect on the NCLGBA winter conference, I think about my motivation to attend.  First, I wanted to learn more about budgeting in North Carolina.  Second, I wanted to gain valuable insights that I could use in my work.  Third, I wanted to build connections that will help us build an even better budget.  All of these have been accomplished and more.

So, when I ask “why” I attended the conference, I realize my conference experience was a success.  I strongly encourage other budget professionals to reflect on why you attended and consider attending a future NCLGBA conference.  As I mentioned above, I “strongly agree” all of my colleagues attend!

#NCLGBA19 Recap Series: Innovation and Change

Over the next few weeks, we will be featuring reflections on the 2019 Winter Conference. If you would like to share your experience, please email admin@nclgba.org.

Our second #NCLGBA19 Conference Recap comes from Mimi Clemens, Winter 2019 Conference Scholarship Recipient and MPA Candidate, UNC Chapel Hill

This December, I was able to attend the 2019 NCLGBA Winter Conference in Asheville, North Carolina with a scholarship from NCLGBA. Overall, the conference was a wonderful experience! Each day of the conference there was a general session in the morning followed by concurrent sessions with usually three sessions to choose from. At the end of Wednesday and Thursday, there were networking opportunities with roundtables and a happy hour. The conference concluded with the Economic Update and a raffle. I had a wonderful time meeting local government employees in different stages in their careers, including Budget, Finance, Performance, and Budget and Management Analysts, Senior Analysts, and Directors as well as City, Town, and County Managers. It was great meeting Analysts at the beginning of their careers in local government. This was greatly beneficial to me as a soon-to-be graduate of UNC Chapel Hill’s MPA program this May. It was enlightening hearing from them their experiences and advice after graduating from MPA programs within the state and what ways MPA programs translate well with the local government profession and lessons learned.

Three of my favorite sessions of the Winter Conference were: The Value of Planning in the 21st Century: What’s Next? presented by Mitchell Silver, High Performance Leadership: Connecting to Your Manager, Supervisor, and Your Board presented by Jeff Richardson, and Public Engagement Tools to Reach a 21st Century Audience presented by Ming-Chun Lee and Scott Correll. I was drawn to all three of these sessions due to their innovative nature. In Mitchell Silver’s presentation, the changing demographics of America will create new norms, expectations, and needs from communities for local governments to address. Jeff Richardson’s presentation encouraged self-awareness as public leaders to be able to understand elected officials, residents, and staff’s viewpoints when addressing issues in the community. The test we took during Richardson’s session was eye-opening by showing how the viewpoint and expectations of the community, staff, and elected officials can shape organizational culture and performance of the organization when addressing issues in the community. Lastly, Ming-Chun Lee and Scott Correll’s presentation on public engagement in the 21st century was fascinating. Correll discussed how the City of Charlotte’s Urban Design Center created a board game as a new way to engage with the public. This started a conversation in the community on what city residents would like to see Charlotte become in the next 20 years. With the many different paths Charlotte residents could choose in the game, the city was able to gain insight into what priorities the community values and how the community would like the city to manage growth. And Lee used new geospatial technologies to create an app that would augment reality for users on their smart phone. This app allowed for residents to see what neighborhoods in Charlotte looked like in the past as well as changing demographic trends.

I am grateful to be given this opportunity to attend the 2019 NCLGBA Winter Conference. With the new year, 2020 will bring new challenges and solutions for local governments. It is my hope that I can take what I learned from these sessions and apply it towards future challenges that may arise.

RSVP to the Summer 2020 Conference Planning Meeting

On behalf of the NCLGBA Board, we invite you to the NCLGBA 2020 Summer Conference Planning Meeting on Friday, February 21st, 2020!

The objectives are to:

  1. brainstorm conference session topics that are exciting and relevant to our members,
  2. secure volunteer commitments including moderators and registration help, and
  3. network with state-wide colleagues!

Click here to RSVP (yes or no) by Friday, January 31st, 2020. Even if you can’t attend, please follow the link to share ideas for session topics, speakers, and/or volunteer to be a moderator or help at registration.

Join us in downtown Charlotte (free parking) between 12pm-3pm at the:

Charlotte Fire Department Headquarters
500 Dalton Ave.
Charlotte, NC 28206

Lunch (including VG, V, GF, etc.) options will be provided from 12pm-1pm. If you can join us, select your lunch option using the link above.

FAQ

Where and when is the 2020 Summer Conference?

Doubletree by Hilton, Atlantic Beach between July 15-17 (hotel reopening soon!)

Is the Planning Meeting only meant for Board Members?

No, all local government budget professionals are welcome! Even if you do finance, strategic planning, data analytics you are welcome!

Is a teleconference line available to join the planning meeting?

No, the teleconference option hasn’t worked too well because of how loud and decentralized (group-work) the conversation is.

If you can’t make it, the best way to share with us your ideas is through the RSVP link and then we can follow up accordingly and include your ideas as part of the conversation.

As always, thank you all for coming together to create great experiences and professional development opportunities for our colleagues across the State. If you have any questions, feel free to contact our Conference Planners, Brian or Paarth.

 

#NCLGBA19 Recap Series: Building Connections to Increase Meaning

Over the next few weeks, we will be featuring reflections on the 2019 Winter Conference. If you would like to share your experience, please email admin@nclgba.org.

Our first #NCLGBA19 Conference Recap comes from Ellenore Holbrook, Budget Analyst, City of Asheville

The 2019 Winter Conference addressed a wide variety of topics throughout its sessions, but I found one dominant theme between them all: connecting with one another.

I am not talking about connecting in the formal, shake hands and talk about the weather sense of networking. Rather, talking about the differences in our experiences, acknowledging them, and learning from one another.

I first noticed this theme during the opening session with Mitchell Silver who discussed how to plan for the 21st century. He spoke about changing demographics at the local, state, and national levels and how they would impact the challenges our communities face over time. What struck me was when he spoke openly about the different generations, their attributes, and how we are able to learn from one another to better support our organizations. As the demographics of NCLGBA change, we continue to learn new ideas from one another and push ourselves to be better.

The theme of connection continued throughout a number of sessions, including the panel on the Recession. As someone who was in high school during the Great Recession, I do not have a clear idea of how it impacted our organizations. By being able to hear from those who experienced it firsthand, we are able to gain an understanding of how we can better address the next recession.

Finally, my favorite session (and I promise it was not because I helped plan it!) was Speed Coaching. Entirely centered on connecting with those in your field, it provided a space for those beginning their budget career to ask questions and listen to those who have a wide breadth of experience. With the time constraint, it pushed participants to ask valuable questions quickly, rather than attempting to make small talk. The best part was after the session officially ended, most individuals remained in the room to continue their conversations and meet others.

Building connections with one another is important but also difficult. It can be hard to get over the awkwardness of meeting new people, asking potentially difficult questions, and making yourself vulnerable in recognizing what you do not know. This conference provided opportunities for everyone to open up, learn about something new, and connect with others in a valuable and mutually beneficial way.

Announcing the 2019 Winter Conference Scholarship Winners

The NCLGBA Board is pleased to announce two scholarship winners for the 2019 Winter Conference:

Mimi Clemens
Mimi is a Master of Public Administration Candidate at UNC Chapel Hill. She completed her undergraduate studies in public policy and history at the College of William & Mary. Growing up near Washington, D.C., Mimi has a true passion for government and enjoys local government podcasts like ELGL’s GovLove. Currently, she works as a Research Assistant for the Local Government Workplaces Initiative at the UNC School of Government. She would love to meet all of you, so don’t hesitate to say “hi” and chat! Mimi is set to graduate in May 2020 and is looking forward to beginning her career in local government.

Rusty Mau
Rusty is a graduate of NC State University with a master’s degree in economics. He is a passionate management and budget analyst with Buncombe County and has a variety of professional experiences; other professional experience includes serving as a legislative assistant with the U.S. House of Representatives and working as a quantitative analyst with Bank of America. Rusty enjoys hiking in the NC mountains with his wife, Selena, and their dog, Bojangles (@its.bo.time).

Please be sure to introduce yourself to our winners at the conference, give a warm welcome, share a little about yourself during the networking breaks, and hold onto their contact information to make future connections.

2019 Winter Conference Networking Update!

Good afternoon!

We are nearing the 1-month countdown to the much anticipated NCLGBA 2019 Winter Conference in the beautiful mountains of Asheville, North Carolina.  The planning committee and board is excited to present a powerful slate of speakers and activities for our membership.  We will be sending a draft agenda out next week and look forward to sharing the full details with you then.  Until then please take a closer look at some exciting highlights!

  • The “RAD Plan, Man” bus tour! – Join the natives in learning how Asheville is turning a vision into a reality with a tour of a massive road, greenway, stormwater, and civic space project in their local River Arts District (RAD).  The tour will direct members through the unique industrial and arts district along the French Broad River and showcase their use of grants and private investment to revitalize the area.  Seating is limited to twenty-two (22) spaces.  Please e-mail Taylor Floyd and copy me to reserve your spot (first come, first serve).
  • Networking Hot Spots – As we wind down on Thursday, get ready for an opportunity to share ideas, figure out dinner plans, or reflect on how embarrassing that one moment was for Paarth.  We will be hosting a room of round-table topics ranging from City-County Relations, to Best Hiring Practices and a highly acclaimed “General” conversation table.  Additionally, we will have a room dedicated to a “Speed Coaching” exercise.  Ten (10) of your experienced colleagues have offered their time to sit in a room for one-on-one conversations with our members.  This opportunity is for those newer members looking for career guidance and is by reservation only (first come, first serve).  To sign-up please e-mail Ellenore Holbrook and copy me on the message.

Please do not forget to register for the conference and lock in your hotel rooms today!  A trip to Beer City USA and the eclectic downtown Asheville scene is not one you are going to want to miss.  Did I mention that we have great sponsors making plans as well?  Look for an ELGL and Oracle partnered supper club when you visit the sponsor booths.

Registration is now closed. If you have questions, please contact Teresa Fulk, NCLGBA Treasurer.

See you in a month!

Brian Pahle

NCLGBA 3rd Vice President

Nominations Open for 2019 Vogt Award

Nominations for the 2019 Vogt Award are closed.

 

Good Morning Local Government Budget Professionals:

It is my pleasure to announce and encourage nominations for the 2019 A. John “Jack” Vogt Award for Outstanding Commitment to the Advancement of Local Government Budgeting and Evaluation. This career award is the highest annual award presented by the North Carolina Local Government Budget Association (NCLGBA) to recognize individuals who have served as innovators and leaders advancing budget and/or evaluation practices in North Carolina local government during their careers.

In 2006, Dr. Jack Vogt became the first recipient of the award to honor his thirty-four year legacy as an innovator, teacher, mentor, and consummate student of local government budgeting and evaluation.

Nominees must have a minimum of ten years of local government service in North Carolina.  “Government service” is defined broadly as any profession that works in or with municipal, county, or other local government jurisdictions. Examples include budget/finance professionals, city/county managers, elected officials, academics, and local government financial consultants.

Nomination applications and a list of previous award winners can be accessed on the NCLGBA website. Completed nomination applications should be submitted via email to vogtaward@nclgba.org by 11:59pm on Friday, November 8, 2019. A committee from the NCLGBA will review the submissions and present the award at the 2019 Winter Budget Conference on Thursday, December 12th during the luncheon held at the Crowne Plaza in Asheville, NC.

If you have any questions about the nomination form or process, please feel free to contact me at michelledaniels.work@gmail.com or at (919) 351-0104.

North Carolina has a strong, national reputation as a leader in local government budgeting and evaluation. I hope you will take this opportunity to recognize those who have helped us earn this reputation and charted new paths for all of us to participate, learn from and benefit.

Thank You,

Michelle Daniels
2019-2020 President, NCLGBA