‘We’re back’: Local Government Academy returns to Missoula
Armed with homemade spreadsheets and dense government documents, 22 participants in Missoula’s Local Government Academy endeavored to develop a mock city budget on Thursday night.
The academy consisted of renters and homeowners of various ages from all across the city limits, with a shared interest in peeling back the curtain of their local government. Throughout the six sessions starting in February, academy-goers listened to presentations from different city departments, visited service providers like the Missoula Fire Department and deepened their understanding of municipal operations.
This year’s sessions marked the return of the popular program after a multi-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
City Council Ward 3 Representative Gwen Jones, who led participants through the mock budget exercise, said she was impressed with the crop of attendees this year.
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“They’re very open to learning,” she said.
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Councilor Sandra Vasecka, who represents Ward 6, was equally pleased with the amateur city councilors busy crunching numbers