My colleagues on City Council and I are working together to review Mayor Murray’s budget for 2015-2016. We’ve heard from hundreds of people at the two Public Hearings and many more people have written to suggest investments in programs we want to support—thank you for your active participation in the process!
My primary budget priorities for this year are to improve public health and public safety downtown and in all neighborhoods in Seattle. I am specifically focusing my requests on services to help unsheltered Seattle residents and other vulnerable members of our community. I am the lead sponsor for increasing funding for hygiene services like the Urban Rest Stop and for requesting that the Human Services Department promote a program for installing lockers in public places. I have also signed on as a sponsor for the Crisis Line and for funding YouthCare.
Each councilmember is advancing specific suggestions for how to modify the budget, often requesting additional funding for specific services/departments. As the Chair of the Seattle Public Utilities & Neighborhoods, I’m leading a request to support a bond levy to fund Seattle Public Utilities’ solid waste programs which we approved last summer. I’m also leading a request for funding to design Smith Cove Park this year while King County’s equipment is on site, and supporting my colleagues in projects such as cleaning up Green Lake.
On a separate community building issue, I am working to preserve funding in the Mayor’s budget for new Summer Parkways. These events provide wonderful connections, promote walking and biking in our neighborhoodhoods, and highlight new ways for neighborhood economic development. Check out this short video on Portland’s Sunday Parkways. Very inspiring!
Portland has shared their budget information and to-do list with us. Just wait to see what we can do next year here in Seattle!
Watch Seattle Channel this week to see what types of budget requests each councilmember is putting forth and how we are working together to create a balanced, realistic budget that reflects our values. We will be voting on the final budget package before Thanksgiving.
Stay tuned to the Seattle City Budget website; more information will be forthcoming over these next few weeks.