With about two weeks to go before the City Council must pass the city’s fiscal year 2022 budget before the looming June 30 deadline, the status of the spending plan is still up in the air.
As it stands, the council is working with Mayor Bill de Blasio’s proposed $98.6 budget – the city’s largest ever – and a 11.8% increase over last year’s $88.2 fiscal year budget.
Currently, de Blasio’s budget accounts for about $14.2 billion in federal aid, $5.9 billion in direct local aid, and $7 billion in federal education funding. The executive budget included full funds for universal free 3-K for all, $234 million to hire 10,000 temporary employees for the creation of the City Cleanup Corps to combat the scourges of litter and graffiti, and money top expand early childhood special education amongst a plethora of other initiatives.
“The Council is working hard to have the best possible budget for all New Yorkers and make critical investments as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D-Manhattan). “Our focus is restoring investments in education, mental health treatment and alternatives to incarceration.”
According to City Council sources, there are serious concerns with the executive budget and the size of the out-year gaps. There is also a concern because the executive budget didn’t include a lot of the initiatives and one-shots typically funded or the baselining that was asked for.
This is an issue that has concerned members of the Council, but the source says that a budget won’t be passed until it’s ready.
The Council has already secured a historic level of Fair Student Funding, which is the main source of funding for most schools, a massive expansion of social workers in schools is also part of the budget.
Additionally, the Council called for litter basket restorations and now the Administration is restoring $9.1 million for that service and $7 million for food scrap drop-off sites, among others.
As the city council comes up with their version of the budget, they must also negotiate and come up with a final agreement with the de Blasio administration before the new fiscal year begins on July 1st. Last year, the budget was passed on the final day.