Mayor Steinberg’s proposed budget plan makes crucial neighborhood investments
New ball fields in Del Paso Heights. A restored ice rink in North Sacramento. Free RT passes for all Sacramento kids.
Mayor Darrell Steinberg Thursday called for funding these neighborhood investments and many others in his list of Mayor/Council budget priorities, known as the “budget memo.” The City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday on including the items in the 2019/2020 city budget.
The items on the list total $16 million, and most of them fall under the category of inclusive economic development, or investments in neighborhoods or populations that have traditionally been underserved. See Mayor Steinberg’s full budget proposal here.
Another $34 million in funds remains unprogrammed in the City Manager’s overall 2019/20 budget proposal. Mayor Steinberg proposes to leave decisions on how to spend this money up to the City Council following review by the Measure U Community Advisory Committee and the Inclusive Economic and Community Development Investment Committee.
“What I’m suggesting to my colleagues is that we pass some early wins that show that when we put Measure U on the ballot, we meant what we said about investing in our neighborhoods, investing in our young people, investing in inclusive economic development,” said Mayor Steinberg.
Mervin Brookins, co-founder of the Brother to Brother outreach program for at-risk youth and men, said the proposed spending roadmap shows people in Del Paso Heights that the city is serious about investing there. The plan includes $1.3 million for a new soccer and baseball complex in the neighborhood.
“The mayor is honoring his word to our community,” Brookins said. “We haven’t had investment in over 40 years.”
Among the items included in the $16 million:
$750,000 to support the relocation of the Sacramento LGBT Center
$1.3 million to continue the Friday night “Youth Pop Ups” that have provided safe, fun activities for Sacramento teens on weekends this year
$1 million to provide fare free transit for Sacramento kids in grades K-12
$2 million for design and easement acquisition for the Sacramento River bike trail
$900,000 to bolster arts funding in the City Manager’s budget, bringing the total to $2.2 million to begin implementing the city’s Creative Edge cultural plan
The memo also outlines a long-term strategy for inclusive economic development that the Mayor is asking for the City Council to adopt. This strategy includes earmarking a total of $200 million over the next five years for job creation, youth and workforce development, affordable housing and neighborhood projects.
The plan calls for up to $15 million of this money to be used as potential debt service on up to $250 million in bonds to fund affordable housing, city facilities and economic development. The bonds would be issued only when specific projects are identified and approved by the City Council.
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