Carolina Budgets! Best in the World! (Updated 7/11 at 8:57 a.m.)

Carolina Budgets! Best in the World! (Updated 7/11 at 8:57 a.m.)

This running blog about the NCLGBA Conference #NCLGBA18 is by ELGL Executive Director Kirsten Wyatt.

Wednesday, July 11

We’re packing up and getting ready to drive from Chapel Hill to Atlantic Beach! I took a run around my favorite New Urbanism development, Meadowmont to get pumped up and ready to rock at #NCLGBA18.

We also finished our presentation for today and fine tuned our session. Kent, Ben, and I came up with really different innovative ideas that we’re sharing during our session and I’m excited to see what the audience thinks about them.

But perhaps most importantly – since I last blogged on this page – we released the ELGL Diversity Dashboard. I’ll be spending my car ride down to the beach and this afternoon doing follow up outreach to get the ELGL and larger local gov communities interested and excited in this data compilation (and don’t worry – the Dashboard made it into today’s presentation).

Now, I’m enjoying all of the beach pics that #NCLGBA18 attendees are sharing – it was a truly genius idea to host a summer conference at the beach – yet another reason that NCLGBA is an awesome organization.


Monday, July 9

Kent started a blog about our upcoming visit to the North Carolina Local Government Budget Association conference in Atlantic Beach, NC, so I’m writing one too. Mostly because I want to dilute the amount of Petey Pablo videos that he uses on the ELGL blog.

But also because I want to loudly proclaim that the NCLGBA Summer Conference is one of the best local government events in the nation. It’s packed full of quality sessions, it’s really affordable, and they do a great job of mixing some serious learning in with networking and relationship building. I can’t wait to go back.

Our session is an “innovation cage match” where Kent, Ben, and I will share a variety of innovative ideas across five categories: data, workforce development, parks & recreation, budget & finance, and public works. We’re use technology from Public Input for the audience to vote for their favorite idea in each category in real time.

I love this technology because it empowers the audience to engage in the presentation, but more importantly, for this particular audience – to think more deeply about how to use technology to engage communities around budgetary topics.

Getting high quality community feedback is so important to local government budget processes, but traditional methods (like public hearings or town halls) are time consuming and it can be hard to reach busy or overworked community members. Learning about technology tools (like text message polling, online forums and surveys, and more) at a budget conference just makes a lot of sense.

I’m also really excited to see our ELGL friends at this conference. As Kent noted in his blog, we have a lot of crossover in our membership and the NCLGBA-ers are some of my favorite members. We’ll be at the conference on Wednesday and into Wednesday evening.