Phoenix Budget: More Money For Police, Fire, Parks, Libraries

Published: Thursday, May 23, 2019 - 9:44am
Updated: Thursday, May 23, 2019 - 3:24pm
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Christina Estes/ KJZZ
Burton Barr Central Library in Phoenix.

Phoenix is close to approving a final budget for the new fiscal year that starts July 1.

The total general fund budget is $1.4 billion. That includes a $55 million surplus beyond what’s needed to cover city services. The City Council approved using nearly $40 million of the surplus for employee compensation and pension.

→ Read The Trial Budget

Budget Director Jeff Barton highlighted other surplus spending during Wednesday’s council meeting.

“We also allocated $6.5 million to public safety for both police and fire,” he said. “But outside of police and fire, things like library security, cyber security, mental health and veterans court.”

More than $1 million of the surplus will cover eight new park rangers to increase patrols and enforce regulations. Nearly $1 million will be used to continue a program dedicated to street and alley clean up related to homeless encampments in neighborhoods. It started as a pilot project last year using funding from fees collected by the Solid Waste Department with the understanding that Sold Waste funding was not a viable option to maintain the program.

The council approved the trial budget, which triggers public notifications before a final vote scheduled for June 19.

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