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Council Announces 2019 Budget Amendments

Council Focuses on Neighborhoods, Jobs and Poverty

[COLUMBUS-OH] In 2018, Columbus City Council embarked upon a year of unprecedented listening. The team hosted more than 106 events throughout the city, totaling more than 1,000 hours, gathering information directly from residents.

With resident feedback in tow, Councilmembers identified additional needed investment within the 2019 Operating Budget, and on Monday, February 4, 2019, Council announced amendments to the budget.

Click here to view press conference

“Council’s budget amendments reflect the thousands of hours of conversation and engagement that members had with residents,” said Councilmember and Finance Chair Elizabeth Brown. “Despite all of Columbus’s progress, residents continue to emphasize the need for good-paying jobs that support a family; strong neighborhoods that are safe, clean and vibrant; and pathways out of poverty for the far too many people in our city who are still struggling to make ends meet.”

Council received a wide variety of requests from community groups and partners and will dedicate more than $3 million in funds toward the issues that are top of mind for residents and councilmembers alike: jobs, eviction, youth development, food insecurity, infant mortality, transportation, early childhood education and domestic violence intervention among others.

“These amendments are a direct result of community conversations,” said Council President Shannon Hardin. “What you see in this budget is a continued focus on people. Alongside Mayor Ginther, I’m excited for this year’s investments in housing, transportation, inclusive growth and equity.”

Council conducted several public hearings on the proposed 2019 Operating Budget in November and December of 2018.

“One of the things that makes Columbus special is our investment in our communities and residents,” said Council President Pro Tem Michael Stinziano. “This is why I am delighted to secure funding for programs that concentrate on delivering healthy babies like Moms2B, the Department of Public Health’s Car Seat Program that will keep those children safe and Gladden Youth Sports that gives kids a place to grow, thrive and play.”

“I am committed to supporting initiatives that enhance the quality of life for Columbus residents,” said Councilmember Priscilla Tyson. “Funding my priorities - the Local Food Action Plan to increase access to healthy food, affordable food and local food; and The Commission on Black Girls to enhance the work we are doing to cultivate conditions where Black girls are thriving and well positioned for successful futures.”

“The eviction mitigation fund demonstrates Council’s commitment to building stronger neighborhoods through rental assistance and education programming; thereby, effectively preventing families from losing their homes,” said Councilmember Shayla Favor.  “Tenant education is vital for residents to help them understand their rights and responsibilities, and I look forward to working with community partners to assist our residents.”

Councilmember Mitchell J. Brown continues to support the 2017 Police Body Camera initiative.

“We currently have 1,200 body-worn cameras deployed to the Columbus subdivision and traffic bureau officers, recording approximately 65,000 videos each month,” said Brown. “This $168,500 investment will provide an additional year of video maintenance and management software.”

“After countless discussions with residents, civic associations, area commissions and my council colleagues, I’m excited about our priorities for 2019,” said Councilmember Emmanuel Remy. “We have a lot of hard work ahead of us, and we are ready to roll up our sleeves and continue the momentum.”

“It’s an oft-repeated truism that a budget is – above all else – the ultimate demonstration of your priorities,” Councilmember Elizabeth Brown continued. “That’s why we’re proud to announce this package of amendments, which complement the budget proposed by Mayor Ginther and even further align it with our three main priorities.”

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