Monday, May 21, 2007

2007-2008 City Budget

On a unanimous vote (following many weeks of hard work by the Budget and Finance Committee and countless revisions and amendments), the 2007-2008 Fiscal Year budget passed the City Council.

The budget, which is now being sent to the mayor for his signature, achieves the three main goals of the City Council in this year's budget:

1) To strengthen the city's fiscal health even further (our fiscal strength is already the strongest of any big city in America, according to Wall Street).

2) To boost basic city services like sidewalk repair, tree trimming, and street paving in the budget, the heart of our work as City Councilmembers.

3) To fund core priorities of the City Council including but not limited to public safety programs to boost our police strength and provide job and educational development alternatives for our youth; increased funding to end homelessness in Los Angeles; funding our work to revitalize the Los Angeles River; and funding traffic and transportation improvements throughout our city.

For copies of the documents leading up to today's vote (including the mayor's proposed budget and the committee report), visit the Los Angeles City Council Budget and Finance Budget-Related Documents Page.

Budget and Finance Chairman Bernard Parks, as well as Vice-Chair Wendy Greuel and members Greig Smith, Bill Rosendahl, and Jose Huizar helped prepare an excellent budget that built on the strength of the mayor's proposed budget. The council was able to boost infrastructure spending by more than 40 percent, add $1 million in funding to acquire more books in Los Angeles libraries, fund a program to crack down on illegal signs, and boosted our reserve fund for a rainy day to an historic high of more than $200 million, all in a very tough fiscal environment. We also empowered Los Angeles residents to be closer to their government by funding three positions to work with neighborhood councils, a new system to help the public track council motions, and funding to complete updates for eight community plans for our neighborhoods. Finally, we approved funds to help restore Griffith Park following this month's fires and to continue our Heli-Tanker lease to help fight brushfires throughout the city.

$6.79 billion moves forward to the mayor for his signature. All in a good day's work at City Hall. Don't forget, if you would like to see any of the proceedings of the budget deliberations, you can watch them from the video on-demand feature now available at the council on-demand home page.