DuPage County inviting residents to participate in budget survey

Taxpayers are getting the chance to tell DuPage County officials how they want their money spent.

The county is conducting an online survey to solicit feedback from residents on budget-related issues before drafting a proposed spending plan for next year.

"It's another part of the process we use to determine the proper allocation of taxpayer funds," said Paul Fichtner, a county board member who serves as chairman of the finance committee.

The brief survey can be taken until September at

DuPage County Board members have until Nov. 30 to approve a spending plan for the 2017 fiscal year, which begins Dec. 1.

County board Chairman Dan Cronin is scheduled to present his budget proposal on Sept. 13.

In the meantime, department heads and countywide elected officials are talking to board members about what they would like to see in the next budget.

Cronin will consider information from the budget discussions and the survey results when drafting a proposed spending plan.

"We want to see how residents feel the county government is doing as far as providing a proper level of services," Fichtner said. "We want to see if there's any special needs that people feel are not being met."

Residents who respond to the survey are being asked to list what services are important to them. They also are asked how the county should make up for potential cuts in state funding.

In addition, survey respondents are asked to respond to questions about transportation services and infrastructure.

Another question asks respondents if they support the county's efforts to reduce the number of local governments.

Fichtner said about 400 residents responded to a budget survey conducted last year.

"It's been growing through the years, so we're very pleased about that," he said.

Once the proposed budget is unveiled by Cronin, several hearings will be held throughout the county to give residents the chance to learn more about the financial plan.

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