City’s rating upgraded for strong fiscal management
LOS ANGELES — Mayor Eric Garcetti unveiled on Wednesday, April 17, his $10.6 billion spending plan which strengthens the City’s finances and includes record spending to end homelessness and improve Los Angeles’ infrastructure.
“Through a sound budget, we achieve a strong bottom line and strengthen Los Angeles from the bottom up,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “This proposed budget is a blueprint illustrating how we’ll achieve our highest ambitions — from ending homelessness to improving our infrastructure — while maintaining a commitment to fiscal responsibility that has helped to drive Los Angeles’ economic recovery.”
Mayor Garcetti’s proposed budget continues to bolster the City’s fiscal foundation: For the first time since the recession, reserves exceed 8%, which makes Los Angeles fiscally resilient and better able to weather an economic downturn. The Reserve Fund is increased to $399 million, and includes a Budget Stabilization Fund of $110.9 million and an Unappropriated Balance of $20 million.
The proposed budget calls for a record $940 million to improve and update the City’s infrastructure — $140 million more than the previous year. Also included is $348 million for street repairs and maintenance, and $117 million for Vision Zero and traffic and pedestrian safety projects. It allocates funding to advance the Mayor’s sustainability goals with $38 million in Measure W funds going toward clean water infrastructure, and $3 million for the City’s innovative Cool Pavement Program and investments in tree planting.
The proposed budget includes the City’s largest-ever investment to end the homelessness crisis — with $457 million in permanent housing, temporary shelter, services, and facilities to help homeless Angelenos find their way off the streets. The budget anticipates spending $36 million in Homeless Emergency Aid Program (HEAP) funds that Mayor Garcetti advocated for, and received, from the state last year. As part of funding from the Prop. HHH initiative, $281 million will go toward 27 new permanent supportive housing and affordable housing projects providing more than 2,126 units.
Mayor Garcetti’s proposed budget also calls for:
• Increasing police overtime by approximately 40 percent to cover all critical duties.
• Spending $3 million to help improve dispatch reliability and effective communications for public safety officers.
• Expanding the Advanced Provider Response Units and Fast Response Vehicles to more efficiently dispatch fire resources and emergency medical services.
• Installing electric vehicle chargers and related infrastructure at Police and Fire Stations, as well as streetlight poles.
• Increasing programming and capital improvements at cultural hubs.
• Funding for the Young Ambassadors Program giving College Promise students overseas travel and opportunities for global affairs education.
• Increasing funding for the LA’s BEST Program to offer summer learning at every LAUSD school in the City’s two Promise Zones.
• Investing in a social equity program focused on legal cannabis businesses.
• Committing more than $18 million for four A Bridge Home sites in South Los Angeles scheduled to open in 2019-20.
• Funding to continue five and open six new Safe Parking sites.
• Expanding comprehensive street cleanups and rapid response to keep neighborhoods safe and free of debris.
• Sustaining syringe collection and HIV testing services at locations surrounding A Bridge Home facilities, as well as homeless encampments cleaned up by the City.