Opinion: Hughes’ voice is missing on budget issues

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Alicia Hughes speaks to a crowd at Pat Troy's Ireland's Own pub after winning election to the Alexandria City Council (File photo)

To the editor:

On Tuesday, Alexandria City Manager Rashad Young presented his fiscal year 2013 budget recommendations to the city council. Until council approves the final budget May 7, the city’s budget and fiscal affairs advisory committee will be examining the budget, hearing the concerns of residents and making its recommendations.

However, when BFAAC meets, there will be a conspicuous empty seat at the table. Since Mathew Tallmer submitted his resignation October 27, 2010, Councilwoman Alicia Hughes has not had a representative on this important body. We are going into a second budget cycle without the benefit of the advice of her appointee. BFAAC’s budget analysis and yearly report are major vehicles for resident involvement in the budget process.

I hope Ms. Hughes will make an immediate recommendation to the entire council to fill this vacancy. I also believe she owes the taxpayers of Alexandria an explanation of why this vacancy has existed for close to 16 months.

– Susan B. Kellom
Alexandria