The City Council’s final batch of proposed additions, cuts, and changes to the Seattle budget are on the table and District 3’s newly victorious incumbent Kshama Sawant is behind several of the options up for final debate.
Seattle City Council insight reports that most of the more than 40 items introduced Wednesday involve restrictions on the the use of already-budgeted funds, “provisos that prevent the expenditure of certain funds until some condition is met,” or statements of legislative intent.
But a dozen other proposals could represent “substantive changes” to the $6.5 billion 2020 budget including a few from Sawant’s office. In one particularly illustrative example, the D3 rep proposes redirecting $420,000 currently earmarked for “outreach” related to a proposed downtown congestion pricing program to fund eviction legal defense.
Sawant is also proposing to cut $522,000 from funding for SPD recruitment to pay for youth diversion programs and reintroduced her biggest 2020 budget push — cutting the $8.6 million Navigation Team responsible for the city’s encampment sweeps and redirecting the funding to create 14 additional tiny home villages.
Prior to Wednesday’s budget session, Sawant held a “Renters Rights and Restorative Justice” rally to gather supporters to speak about the initiatives.
The council must still meet to vote on the dozen of proposed cuts and redirections — and the dozens more other potential tweaks — before the final council budget committee meeting slated for November 25th.
You can read more about the proposals from SCCI here.
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