Sunday, August 13, 2017

District 10 Update on City Budget Survey

District 10 Newsflash

Brought to you by Councilman 
 Clayton Perry
Howdy Neighbors, 
City Council received briefings on the proposed FY 2018 budget for the City of San Antonio this week. The theme this year is viewing the needs of the City through an equity lens and determining funding accordingly. This means that funding is determined on a needs basis, not an equal share of the budget divided across the districts.  

The "equity lens" is an interesting and different approach. District 10 continues to rank in the bottom five for street quality scores. Having an "equity lens" budget approach does not mean that the bottom five districts will receive ALL the street improvement funding, but it does mean that we would receive more funding for streets than District 6 or 7, who have less need for street improvements. In the proposed 2018 budget, this principle translates into a $99 million total budget for street maintenance, $5.8 million for pavement markings, and $3 million split equally for Vision Zero, traffic calming measures, and pedestrian safety. 

Other highlights of the proposed budget include three commercial corridor annexations, 40 new police officers (in addition to the 5 cadet classes already funded through the 2017 budget), 43 new firefighters and EMS personnel, and $500,000 for the Northeast Corridor Revitalization Initiative. Additionally, the city will be expanding their homeless encampment outreach to include the 410 and Austin Highway areas. You can view an interactive tool break down the budget through the Transparency SA Digital Portal. This tool allows you to see percentages and sources of revenue and expenditures, and the budget numbers for specific departments. 

One issue we would like to see more research on is if this is the time to reduce our property tax rate. The City has not raised the property tax rate in the last 25 years, but we continue to receive more and more revenue due to rising property appraisals. The 2018 budget reflects an additional $25 million from property tax revenues. As someone who created and oversaw budgets for many years, I know we can spend as much as we are given. We want to see if the City actually needs to continue receiving such dramatic increases in tax revenues, or if we can rollback our tax rate and take less from our residents. While we cannot control property appraisals or the school tax rate, I think it's time we look at ways we can help alleviate tax burdens. 

There are several Budget Open Houses scheduled across the City. The Northeast Budget Open House will occur on August 21st, 7PM, at the Tool Yard instead of our regular District 10 Community Meeting. City staff will present the proposed budget and be on hand to take questions and feedback from the audience. I encourage you all to attend this meeting. 

I am grateful that District 10 is slated to have basic needs funded. However, we need your feedback on what you think the City should be prioritizing during this budget review cycle. Please take the time to review the proposed budget presentation included in this newsletter, and answer our short survey. This will give us a better idea of what District 10's priorities are and ensure that those needs will be met in the budget. 

Thank you for continuing to voice your priorities and concerns to our office. 


District 10 Budget Survey

Click the button to open our District 10 Budget Survey

The Proposed Fiscal Year 2018 City of San Antonio Budget

Click the link to open the City Council A-Session presentation highlighting the budget for Fiscal Year 2018. 

Budget Open House Schedule

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City Councilman Clayton Perry, 1635 NE Loop 410, Suite 510, San Antonio, TX 78209

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