Marlene Feist

10 New Officers Proposed for 2019

Marlene Feist, Public Works Director of Strategic Development, 509.625.6505

Tuesday, September 4, 2018 at 4:39 p.m.

Mayor David Condon, along with Police Chief Craig Meidl and Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer, rolled out a first look at the 2019 City Budget; the proposed 2019 City of Spokane Program Budget includes significant investment in public safety.

Notably, the programmatic budget proposal includes funding for 10 new Police officers and $1 million to support the 48 firefighters hired using federal SAFER grant funds through the conclusion of that pilot program at the end of 2019.

The proposed new officers would be in addition to the 10 new officers added as part of the 2018 budget. The new officers will help support work to reduce property crime in the City. Property crime in the City of Spokane is down. Residential burglaries are down 13 percent over last year, commercial burglaries are down 10 percent, and vehicle thefts are down as well. 

Public Safety isn’t the only priority for the budget. The initial proposal also addresses:

  • Human Services. The budget supports increased case management to help those who are experiencing homeless get into permanent supported housing, while working toward an additional shelter for our community.
  • Infrastructure. 2019 will mark the end of our major infrastructure investment to reduce overflows from combined sewers from entering the river. We’ll also start work on a new Post Street Bridge and additional work on East Sprague Avenue.
  • Economic Development. Work will continue to advance the development of our PDA area in the West Plains and in Hillyard. And we’ll continue our economic development outreach to individuals and businesses who could benefit from our quality of life advantages.

We still have some work to do. In this initial release of the 2019 General Fund budget, we are about $3 million out of balance. We are working now to refine our revenue expectations and reevaluate planned expenditures to find savings.

Overall, the proposed budget estimates expenses at $734 million, including $195 million for the General Fund.  The General Fund supports basic government services including police, fire, streets, libraries, and parks. Much of the rest of the budget includes capital construction projects and the City’s large utility operations—water, wastewater, and solid waste collection and disposal.

Work on the budget by both the Mayor and the City Council will continue through the fall. The Mayor will deliver the line-item budget for 2019 to the City Council by Nov. 1, and the Council must adopt a balanced budget prior to the end of the year.

Additional information on the budget is available:

2019 Budget graphic

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