NYC Council Could Vote on $89 Billion Budget Thursday: 9 Things To Know

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The New York City Council could vote on Mayor De Blasio’s $89 billion spending plan, the largest budget in the city’s history, as early as the June 7 council meeting at 1:30.

Here are nine things you should know about the Mayor’s proposal:

  1. The budget increases spending at 5.8 percent, more than twice the rate of inflation (2.1 percent). The five-year projection estimates that the city’s budget will reach $97 billion by 2022.
  2. The proposed New York City budget is larger than the budget of Florida (and 45 other states), despite the city having half the population.
  3. Federal tax reform boosted city revenues with a $1 billion one-shot. The city’s budget uses that revenue to increase spending this year, which creates budget gaps in the future.
  4. Despite a self-imposed hiring freeze, the budget includes 1,700 new employees to increase the size of city government to 330,818 employees—larger than the population of St. Louis.
  5. The City Council and the City Comptroller have raised alarms on the city’s future solvency, stating that the budget depends on continued economic growth; the city will not have enough money to finance operations in the event of an economic downturn.
  6. According to the Comptroller, the city will be cash-poor in December with just $1 billion on hand. In December 2017, the city had $5.4 billion on hand. This is money that pays for basic expenses, such as payroll.
  7. Since Mayor De Blasio took office, spending on school personnel is up 23 percent ($3.7 billion), with staffing increased by 10 percent, despite a 3-percent decrease in enrollment. This includes a 24-percent increase to Central Staff.
  8. The City Council has criticized the effectiveness of the mayor’s homeless programs, taking “serious issue with the elevating level of spending without significant results.” Spending on homelessness has increased 84 percent since 2015, costing approximately $36,050 per homeless person. This includes a 630-percent increase to services ($556 million).
  9. The City Council is supporting a $400 property tax rebate for homeowners earning less than $150,000, capturing more than 467,000 homeowners.
    Note: The agenda is not published for the June 7 meeting as of this post. The council is required to pass the Mayor’s budget before the July 1 fiscal year.