In FY 2020, every Metro Council member has discretion over how to spend $209,000 (plus any carryforward) in his or her district: $25,000 for District Operations, $65,000 for Neighborhood Development, $100,000 for Capital Infrastructure and $19,000 for Council Designated reasons. That is a lot of taxpayer money, which is why I have established spending policies, practiced participatory budgeting and planned budgets at the beginning of each new fiscal year.
As I lamented last month, however, participatory budgeting itself has fallen victim to the budget shortfall this year. Accordingly, I have crafted new CIF/CDF, NDF and District Operations (“Cost Center”) budgets based on the District 8 Strategic Plan, lessons learned over the last three years and tryin’ to make a dollar out of fifteen cents.
My CIF/CDF Budget takes the place of Our Money Our Voice (PB), funds seven projects and saves for a rainy day:
- $100,000 (pending a matching fund source) for partial implementation of the Bardstown Road Corridor Safety Study – namely, crosswalk accessibility improvements and visibility enhancements. (As a bonus, this includes the installation of a “parking line” along KY-1703 & Baxter Ave in Tyler Park to slow down speeding through the neighborhood.)
- $26,800 for security locks on all the bathroom doors in Cherokee Park and Tyler Park to abate late-night vandalism and drug use. (Olmsted Parks Conservancy has agreed to pay the monthly Wi-Fi, servicing and monitoring fee.)
- $20,000 for Barret Avenue streetscape improvements from Winter Ave to Highland Ave (Phase I).
- $20,000 for Sutherland Drive/Calder Court reforestation and new pocket park (Phase I).
- $10,000 for Litter Is Lame cigarette butt receptacles.
- $10,000 to plant more trees, including the fourth annual Planting O' the Green.
- $4,500 for speed humps on Lakeside Drive.
- $23,772.54 in the bank.
My NDF Budget is similar over FY 2019, funds community partnerships and events and, also, saves for the future:
- $30,000 matching funds for new Cherokee Triangle and Bonnycastle neighborhood plans.
- $18,344.40 for litter picking and street sweeping.
- $12,500 for graffiti abatement (Highland Commerce Guild).
- $10,000 for senior lunches and activities (Highlands Community Ministries).
- $10,000 for the District 8 Accessibility Loan Program.
- $1,500 each for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Louisville Pride Festival and Bardstown Road Aglow.
- $500 each for the Big Rock Jazz and Blues Festival, Shakespeare in Tyler Park, Buy Local Fair and Give-A-Jam to End Homelessness.
- $500 for German-Paristown Neighborhood Center operations.
- $500 for freshman tree giveaway.
- $400 for the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular, $250 for Movies Under the Stars Presents and $250 for Forest Fest.
- $250 for volunteer income tax assistance.
- $37,483.37 in the bank.
Finally, my Cost Center Budget is simple and consistently under: it basically funds our internship program and podcast.
In the absence of true participatory budgeting this year, I welcome comments and suggestions over the next two weeks and will report back any late revisions or new details that result. (Sorry but paving and sidewalk plans are all set and Public Works is still collecting data for alley work; my eyes are on alleys in FY 2021.)
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