This morning Budget Chair Sally Bagshaw published her initial balancing package, incorporating a portfolio of self-balancing changes to the Mayor’s proposed budget based on last week’s proposals by Council members that received consensus support.
Last’s night’s election results show that Initiative 976 will likely pass; it will blow a $35 million hole in the city budget that will need to get addressed in the next three weeks, making the initial balancing package very much a work in progress. That said, anything that didn’t make it in at this point is very unlikely to find its way in later as the Council struggles to find tens of millions of dollars.
With that context, here’s what made the cut so far.
With the “Form B” budget discussions now complete, Council member Sally Bagshaw, the budget chair, is hard at work assembling her initial “balancing package” of changes to the Mayor’s proposed budget. Her job is to cram as many of the Council’s wish-list items in, to match whatever additional revenues she can scrape together. The final piece of the puzzle is an updated projection from the City Budget Office on 2019 and 2020 revenues, which was delivered at the end of the week. Usually it delivers at least a few million dollars of extra revenues to spend; this year, not so much.
This morning the City Council hit an important milestone in its deliberations over next year’s budget: it completed discussion of all the issues that Council members and their staff had raised for discussion with the Mayor’s proposed budget. Here’s a summary of the more significant matters currently in play.
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.
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.
Tomorrow morning, Mayor Durkan will unveil another of her 2020 budget initiatives: increasing the tax on Uber and Lyft rides in the city. In combination with that, she will announce a proposal to institute a minimum wage for Uber and Lyft drivers.
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.