Councilor Corner: FY22 County Budget Hearings

Vice Chair
Los Alamos County Council

Editor’s note: Councilor Corner contains recaps and observations of Los Alamos County Council meetings by Vice Chair James Robinson as a public service.

Good morning Los Alamos,

Last night, the Los Alamos County Council concluded our annual budget hearings. The hearings lasted 3 days, and Council passed a budget of $245,119,586.

I want to thank my fellow Councilors, and County staff for all the hard work getting through these hearings. The budget is large document to create and translating Council ideas into numbers cannot be easy. As Council, we had tough discussions and late nights about various items, but in the end, we got through it.

I won’t bore you will all the details, but if you would like a recap of the departments and budget options passed, please see the links below:

Night 1:…/council-wades-through…/

Night 2:…/county-council…/

Night 3:

For me, the purchase of bear resistant roll carts and dumpsters for every customer in Los Alamos was one item I was very happy to see passed. As I stated in my column on April 13, I believed these carts and dumpsters are not only a public safety investment, but also helps the County truly become a Bear Friendly Community. The item was $2,400,000, but unlike the current carts, these ones will be free for the customer and easier to unlock.

Since 2017, I have been working hard to keep our citizens and our bears safe. I was very proud to see this item pass, and I am truly thankful to my fellow Councilors for the discussion. There was no debate about the need for these items, just how and where to deploy them.

Unfortunately, due to production delays, we won’t have these carts available for this bear season. That means we need to take precautions to keep bears out of our roll carts. An effective method from last year is using tow straps to secure the lid ( Another method is utilizing use an electric fence or mat. Finally, I have seen success in the use of kitty litter or washing the cart with ammonia. In the end, whatever way works is a good way.

The next Council meeting will be at 6:00 p.m. on May 4, 2021.

As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please email me at