Break out your calculators — the city budget season has begun.
Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell recently released a $7.8 billion budget proposal. The mayor’s plan makes adjustments to the city’s 2023-24 budget that was approved in December 2022.
This proposal is the first set of adjustments after the city moved to a biannual budgeting process in 2022.
The budget will go to City Council for approval later this year, but let’s dive into what changes are in the proposal for 2024.
Show us the money
The mayor has mapped out funding increases for the following city programs and departments.
- $334 million would go toward funding afforable housing projects like the newly created Social Housing Public Development Agency. This is a 33% increase from what was originally allocated. The funding, however, assumes that the Housing Levy on Seattle ballots this November will pass.
- The new Community Assisted Response and Engagement (CARE) Department would receive $26.5 million, which represents a 30% increase over what was approved for 2023.
- Human service provider wages would be higher with a 9.5% increase — $23 million total.
- New positions would be funded to increase police oversight, like adding two new deputy directors to the Office of Police Accountability and Community Police Commission.
Want to join the conversation about the proposal? The new budget will be addressed over the coming eight weeks at City Council meetings before a final budget is presented in November.
Check into one of these meetings to give your feedback or write to your councilmember.