This morning the City Council began discussing in earnest its competing ideas for changes to next year’s budget for the homelessness response, following its first conversation two weeks ago. Much of the time was taken up with one question: what to do with the Navigation Team. And it’s clear that the Council is nowhere near consensus.
This morning, Budget Chair Sally Bagshaw circulated a schedule of topics for the budget “issue identification” hearings schedule for this week and early next week.
The Council begins discussing budget issues this week.
Last week the Mayor’s Office officially transmitted to the City Council its “Fare Share” legislation, imposing a tax on Uber and Lyft rides and enforcing a minimum wage for drivers. A close read of the bills reveals some interesting details and nuances.
With a plan in the works to transition to a regional authority to organize the response to the homelessness crisis, yesterday the City Council and a collection of city departments had a public discussion of the Mayor’s proposed homelessness budget for next year.
This morning, Mayor Jenny Durkan rolled out her proposal for the city’s budget for 2020. With total planned expenditures of $6.479 billion, the budget represents an 8.5% increase ($509 million) over 2019.
The Mayor’s Office has been trickling out announcements of budget initiatives over the last two weeks, but today they rolled it all up into one big proposal with a few new additions.
The 2020 budget process officially kicks off this week, with the unveiling of the Mayor’s proposed budget tomorrow morning. But first, the City Council is madly rushing to finish a long list of other items…
Monday morning’s Council Briefing will have an executive session to discuss pending litigation with the city’s attorneys.
At 11:45am tomorrow, the Mayor will give a speech at Franklin High School to unveil her proposed 2020 budget.
Monday afternoon’s full City Council meeting will include the official delivery of the Mayor’s budget proposal to the Council, plus final votes on:
- the confirmation of Emily Alvarado as Director of the Office of Housing;
- the repeal of I-124;
- the renewal of the Multifamily Housing Property Tax Exemption Program;
- an ordinance approving SDOT’s use of two surveillance technologies: traffic cameras and license-plate readers;
- an ordinance raising the minimum age to buy tobacco and marijuana from 18 to 21 to match recent changes in state law;
- an ordinance increasing the penalties for certain offenses involving animals;
- several appointments to the Seattle Housing Authority Board of Commissioners;
- an extension to the lease for Seattle Children’s PlayGarden;
- an ordinance authorizing the Monorail to join the ORCA Card system;
- an ordinance transferring the Chester Morse Collection of Native American artifacts from SPU to the Muckleshoot tribe;
- an ordinance imposing a tax on heating oil;
- an ordinance updating the city’s traffic code to match recent changes in state law;
- an ordinance adding additional penalties to the city’s Street and Sidewalk Use code;
- an update to the city’s rules on sidewalk cafes;
- an ordinance granting citation authority to the Seattle Fire Department for enforcement of the Fire Code.
This week’s Introduction and Referral Calendar includes the following pieces of new legislation:
- a re-introduction of an ordinance releasing tenants who are victims of domestic violence from liability for damage done by the perpetrators (the title of the ordinance needed to be updated to reflect amendments in the underlying bill);
- an ordinance adjusting the city’s program for emergency assistance to low-income residents who can’t pay their utility bills.
Monday evening at 6pm, the Human Services, Equitable Development and Renter Rights Committee will meet for the unveiling of Council member Sawant’s bill imposing residential rent control in Seattle.
Tuesday morning, the Civil Rights, Utilities, Economic Development and Arts Committee meets. On its agenda:
- the ordinance providing relief from liability for tenants who are victims of domestic violence;
- an ordinance restricting a landlord’s ability to limit the number of roommates in a rental unit;
- an update to the ordinance specifying the information that a landlord must supply to a tenant;
- an ordinance requiring landlords to accept payment in non-electronic forms;
- an ordinance requiring landlords to register under the city’s Rental Registration and Inspection Ordinance before issuing notices to terminate a lease;
- a briefing on cultural spaces;
- a continuation of the committee’s conversation on switching to every-other-week garbage collection.
Monday at noon, the Planning, Land Use and Zoning Committee meets, in what will likely be Council member Pacheco’s last time chairing the committee before he leaves office. It will take up:
- a resolution recommending the building of a second Montlake Bridge;
- a contract rezone in South Seattle;
- a briefing on the Green Seattle Partnership;
- a briefing on micromobility benefits and job access in Seattle.
Monday at 2pm, the Housing, Health, Energy and Workers’ Rights Committee meets. On its agenda:
- the transfer of two former Seattle City Light substation sites to the Office of Housing for affordable housing projects;
- an ordinance approving a change in Seattle City Light’s rates in Burien;
- an ordinance approving Seattle City Light’s NorthernGrid funding agreement;
- the previously-mentioned ordinance updating the city’s emergency assistance program for low-income residents having trouble paying their utility bills;
- an ordinance authorizing Seattle City Light to run pilot programs fordemand-response and low-income programs.
Monday at 4pm, the Finance and Neighborhoods Committee meets, and will take up once again the proposed ordinance on “RV ranching.”
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday the Council will hold Budget Committee meetings to walk through the Mayor’s proposed 2020 budget. The detailed agendas for these meetings has not yet been published.
Thanks for reading to the end! If you find my reporting valuable, please consider making a financial contribution to support my work. Even just $1 a month helps.
This afternoon, Mayor Durkan unveiled the first in a series of initiatives in her 2020 budget: a $1.7 million, twelve-point plan to address the Seattle Police Department’s issues with hiring and retention.
This afternoon, the City Council voted out of committee an ordinance approving the proposed sale of the “Mercer Megablock” to Alexandria Real Estate Equities.