Louisville Metro Council approves 2020-2021 Capital and Operating Budgets
Louisville – By a vote of 24 to 1, the Louisville Metro Council on Thursday approved the 2020-2021 Capital and Operating Budgets for Metro Government for the coming Fiscal Year.
Here are the highlights:
$5 million in additional funding for the Louisville Affordable Housing Trust Fund (LAHTF) and its partners to address vacant and abandoned properties through the creation of direct purchase or lease-to-purchase opportunities.
$2.5 million for programs that support home repair, address vacant and abandoned properties, and increase home ownership.
$1 million is allocated for a new Homeowner and Rental Repair Loan Fund to support improvement of residences
$413,400 will put a Metro Public Works crew into neighborhoods, and particularly alleys, to clean areas which have a high level of illegal dumping.
$170,000 to hire two additional Code Enforcement Officers working with Develop Louisville to revitalize disadvantaged neighborhoods.
$21.2 million, supported by the federal CARES Act, for rent assistance needed to prevent evictions as a result of coronavirus-related financial issues.
$21.2 million, supported by the federal CARES Act, for small business assistance needed as a result of coronavirus-related financial issues.
$3.5 million to help build and support a community grocery.
$1 million is appropriated for youth and young adult programs, to be approved by Metro Council.
Law Enforcement Reform:
$763,500 in funding for a civilian oversight system.
$1.2 million in state LMPD funds for exploration and implementation in deflection along with co-responder approaches which place behavioral health specialists with police to offer case management connections to treatment, housing, and services
$1.6 million in federal funds redirected to recruitment efforts for a police force which more closely looks like and lives in the community; and training, including use of force, de-escalation, and implicit bias.
Other Budget Changes:
$14.3 million for infrastructure improvements such paving and includes $700,000 for a study of all Louisville Metro road conditions. The sidewalk repair budget is increased by $500,000 and additional funds are appropriated for facilities, parks and library maintenance and repairs$700,000 for a required dry-dock inspection and repair and $500,000 in operating funds for the Belle of Louisville
$500,000 to outfit the Middletown Library, at a location provided at no cost to Louisville Metro by the City of Middletown.
“I'm very proud of the Council coming together to modify the Mayors Proposed Budget, to make significant investments in disadvantaged areas of our city. Because of COVID-19 we were not able to do more, but I look forward to the midyear budget adjustment to hopefully provide more opportunities for our citizens.” President David James District 6
“I believe the budget we passed today under incredibly challenging conditions is a critical first step in helping our city realize its full potential. The investments we are making in our disadvantaged neighborhoods are long overdue and will increase employment, clean up blight and promote wealth-building. Additionally, we are making investments in police reform like new oversight and training and will be piloting a new model of crisis intervention specialists as first responders. We are doing this without making cuts to the number of officers we have on the street.” Councilman Markus Winkler, President Pro Tem District 17
“The Metro Council was able to both continue to invest in our Police and Public Safety while also funding accountability, affordable housing, economic opportunities in disadvantaged areas and taking care of infrastructure. This budget was the product of many hours of teamwork with a group of legislators focused on listening to everyone and finding common ground.” – Budget Committee Vice Chair Kevin Kramer, District 11
“Tonight’s budget includes steps, and not the last ones, toward building a stronger, safer city for everyone. Many constituents have told me we have much more to do – and I agree. I recognize the need for additional investments in our community. Metro Council committees, including a newly formed Committee on Equity and Inclusion, will work to identify additional best practices for policing, community building, and workforce development. I hope we make additional investments by mid-year, as the economy continues to recover from the recession caused by the pandemic.” Bill Hollander Chair of the Metro Council Budget Committee District 9
“My “no” vote tonight was a tough decision, but I am disappointed the budget does not take care of all areas of our city. An example of that; all the pools will be opened except Camp Taylor where a lot of disconnected youth from the Newburg and Norfolk area go to swim. Our youth will have to go to Sun Valley or Fairdale to Swim. We must take care of all the disadvantage youth in Louisville Metro. I hope that is a consideration in years to come.” Councilwoman Barbara Shanklin District 2
“Tonight, this council took an unprecedented leap forward in effort to be a more equitable city, and this is only the beginning. I look forward to continuing my advocacy for equity, combating and decriminalizing poverty and fostering safe and healthy environments. We can no longer allow a zip code to dictate life expectancy! Councilwoman Keisha Dorsey District 3
“Together we passed a Budget for our city that clearly reflects many voices. The community spoke, we listened, and action was taken. I promised to fight for affordable housing, more grocery options, and youth engagement. This budget provides for all three, and then some. Now more than ever, our business community needs us and we are funding several initiatives to help them through these challenging times and into the future. You asked for better services for those experiencing homelessness, mental illness and/or addiction. You asked for law enforcement reform. This budget provides for exploring the implementation of a co-responder approach placing behavioral specialists with police to connect people more quickly with the help they need – not jail. It also provides for training in de-escalation tactics, use of force, and implicit bias for LMPD. And yes, as promised, the Belle of Louisville will continue to carry folks up and down the beautiful Ohio River – we did not sink the Belle.” Councilwoman Barbara Sexton Smith District 4
"I am excited that the council has heard the cries of the West End communities and included in the budget to improve living conditions by addressing vacant and abandoned properties, help those who are in need of home repairs that results in code violations and clean up these alleys! This is the beginning of restoring hope to a community that has been in despair for too long!" Councilwoman Donna Purvis District 5
“Balancing the budget entails hard choices. Trade-offs and prioritization among programs must be made to ensure that the budget fits policies and priorities and incorporates the will of the people. This budget reflects a balance of necessary trade-offs and our sincere effort to put money in programs that will support the most disenfranchised parts of our community. None of this could have been accomplished unless my colleagues and I worked strategically and respectfully. We did both. I am proud of the end product and look forward to getting started in the fall listening to the community to reimagine a more diverse and compassionate budget for 2022.” Councilwoman Paula McCraney District 7
“I think we need a different way of policing and thinking. I think it's a really good first step to put behavioral health specialists, working alongside our police officers, who see things differently and can help shape new policy and change the way to interact with and help our most vulnerable population, which is our chronic homeless and/or mentally ill. I’m glad we are investing more in our disadvantaged communities and trying to provide more opportunities for our most at risk young adults.” Pat Mulvihill District 10
“I am pleased to see our law enforcement fully funded. The LMPD is already suffering from a talent drain with officers leaving en masse to other area agencies for better pay and benefits.” Councilman Mark Fox District 13
“The actions taken last year to streamline Metro spending as well as assistance from the Federal Government through the CARES act have helped to take the Mayor’s continuation budget and make it into a budget that addresses many of our community needs through investing in housing, economic opportunities, infrastructure and public safety. This budget maintains our progress on paving streets with more than $20 million towards paving as well as a plan for evaluating the status of our streets throughout the community.” Councilman Scott Reed, District 16
“This budget maintains our progress towards fixing streets and infrastructure, while also investing in housing, mentoring and other programs that will assist in growing opportunities for people throughout the city. The budget will establish a long-term new location for the Middletown Library and help to restore its operating hours.” Councilman Anthony Piagentini, District 19
“The FY21 budget is just the “tip of the iceberg” of investments needed for addressing the racial disparity and inequities that have plagued our City since before its formation. This budget demonstrates a commitment to neighborhoods with disinvestment while offering the opportunity to create a model within law enforcement that will give Emergency Response and LMPD officers more tools for enhancing safety and community service provision through deflection and co-responder practices. Identifying City budget priorities is not just an exercise that happens in June of each year. It is what we and the community do starting July 1st that has the potential to create impactful change.” Councilwoman Nicole George District 21