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Speak up on the city’s 2010 budget: What gets cut, what doesn’t

Seattle’s 2010 budget process is coming down to crunch time as the deadline approaches for the City Council to shape the plan outgoing mayor Greg Nickels proposed in September. Talk about participatory government — Councilmember Jean Godden will be hosting a conference call for citizens to discuss the 2010 budget this afternoon at 4:30 PM. Information on that and the rest of the Council’s budget schedule this week is below.

You can check out the attached PDF for a summary from the mayor’s office of the 2010 budget. This chart from the economic analysis portion of the report tells the story. Seattle — like the rest of the world — got slapped by the economic downturn. That means a budget plan that makes some hard cuts and dips into the city’s emergency funds. The current plan also calls for no increase in taxes.

Source: City of Seattle

The biggest issues on the board appear to be:

  • Layoffs — 310 positions are targeted for elimination. From Publicola: “Those positions include 38 “executive, management, and supervisory positions,” according to the mayor’s budget highlights, as well as 16 strategic advisors. (Mike McGinn, one of two candidates running for mayor in November, has said he would eliminate half of the city’s “strategic advisor” positions, which he estimates at about 200).”
  • Furloughs — All positions will face 10-day unpaid furloughs under the plan.
  • LibrariesReduced budget would force libraries to be closed on Fridays in addition to Sundays and operate only 35 hours per week.
  • Draining the ‘rain day’ fundSeattle Times reports that moving $25 million to the city’s budget to help cover the shortfall will leave the city’s emergency funds nearly drained.

MONDAY, Oct. 26, 5:30 p.m. BUDGET PUBLIC MEETING, J. Godden

PUBLIC HEARING  Opportunity for input on the 2010 city budget: This will be the third and final public hearing on the budget where the public has the opportunity to provide input to the Council on the 2010 budget. This hearing will be held in Council Chambers, beginning at 5:30 p.m. For those unable to attend, there will be a live call-in with Council Budget Chair Jean Godden from 4:30 – 5 p.m. Call-in number is 206-684-0481.

THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 9:30 a.m. – noon – BUDGET COMMITTEE, J. Godden

PUBLIC COMMENT/DISCUSSIONS

       Department presentations and discussion of options: Council staff will present options to the City Council for possible modifications to the Mayor’s 2010 proposed budget. Check the Council webpage for agendas and related materials.

THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 2 – 5 p.m. – BUDGET COMMITTEE, J. Godden

DISCUSSIONS

       Department presentations and discussion of options: Council staff will present options to the City Council for possible modifications to the Mayor’s 2010 proposed budget. Check the Council webpage for agendas and related materials.

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Andrew Taylor
Andrew Taylor
12 years ago

We’re in the hole, we’ve got to cut somewhere.

One small suggestion for those of us lucky enough to still be working stiffs:

make the shorter days (Weds, Thurs) 12 noon to 7 PM or (better) 1PM to 8 PM, to give us time to get to the library after work, rather than the proposed 11 AM to 6 PM.

Thanks
Andrew

Comrade Bunny
Comrade Bunny
12 years ago

The Community Council is asking that evening hours are kept too. A number of community groups use the library as a meeting place and since everyone has to work, they can only meet in the evenings. We have so few (free) community meeting places on Capitol Hill that I don’t know if we can afford to lose one more.