The Franklin County Commissioners opened their annual budget hearings this afternoon with a presentation from County Administrator Kenneth N. Wilson, in which Wilson laid out his proposal for a more-than $2 billion county budget for 2023. The commissioners will host three days of hearings in which various county agencies will highlight their accomplishments from 2022 and present their budget proposals for the year ahead. The commissioners set the budget for all 35 county agencies, even those that report to other elected county officials, and will vote to approve the final budget in December. The budget hearings are being streamed live via a link at the commissioners’ website, Commissioners.FranklinCountyOhio.gov,
and broadcast on the City of Columbus’ CTV
“The county is in a strong financial position this year because of smart planning in the past. I’m excited to be able to present a forward-thinking and fiscally responsible budget proposal for next year, and to talk about how we’re going to use that budget to help meet the commissioners’ priorities for 2023 and beyond,” said Wilson.
The proposal for next year’s county budget includes funding to continue the commissioners’ historic RISE childcare initiative
, which provided $23 million to make high-quality childcare more affordable for Franklin County residents, and to fund a new 24/7 Rapid Resource Center at the county’s new jail on Fisher Rd. The Rapid Resource Center provides support, resources, and referrals to residents exiting custody at the jail to help them succeed and avoid further contact with the criminal justice system. Also included in the proposed budget is additional funding for Franklin County Public Health, to strengthen the commissioners’ Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts, and to expand community outreach.
“We’re proud of all of the resources we have available for our residents, and this board recognizes the importance of making those resources available to people wherever they may be,” said Wilson. “We’re going to increase our outreach efforts next year, including with several new mobile units that we can use to connect our neighbors with information and referrals that can help Franklin County families thrive.”
The 2023 budget proposal includes General Fund expenditures of $594,228,006, and All Funds expenditures of $2,015,365,782. General Fund revenue comes mostly from sales tax and mostly funds local justice and public safety agencies, including the sheriff’s office, jail, and court system. The All Funds budget includes state and federal passthroughs, and largely funds social and human services, economic development, and additional public safety initiatives. The proposal also shows nearly $82 million in the county’s “rainy day” fund and approximately five months in General Fund cash reserves.
In 2022, the commissioners made historic investments in public health and to shore up and expand the Mid-Ohio Food Collective, created new workforce development programs to accompany existing initiatives, made millions in grants to small businesses and local non-profits, and funded an unprecedented number of affordable housing units. Franklin County is the 31st
-largest of the nation’s 3,069 counties, with more than 1.3 million residents, and one of only 2% to maintain a double Triple-A bond rating. For more information about the county’s budget, visit Budget.FranklinCountyOhio.gov