Tonight the South Bend Common Council adopted the City administration’s proposed 2019 Budget. The $368 million budget aligns administration, Council, and resident priorities after months of public input sessions, Council budget meetings, and internal deliberations. It balances the general fund and preserves the City’s AA S&P Bond rating, which saves taxpayer dollars through very low interest rates on bonds, leases, and other financing options for capital investments.
The 2019 budget contains extensive investment in health and human services, including funding for lead abatement, permanent supportive housing for homelessness, a workforce transportation pilot, and a system of lifelong learning. The City is investing in quality of place, through initiatives like the curb & sidewalk program, the Light Up South Bend neighborhood lighting project, and numerous neighborhood development programs. The City is also expanding free WiFi along major corridors and expanding the parks system to neighborhoods without easy access to green spaces. Over $75 million is allocated for the Police and Fire departments to continue strong public safety operations, including Shotspotter technology and a paramedicine program pilot.
“I want to thank everyone who helped work on the 2019 budget,” said Mayor Pete Buttigieg. “This has been the most collaborative budget process of my administration. I am thankful to the Council, including committee chair Karen White for her leadership of the process, and the administration staff and community residents who took part in this extensive process. This budget will serve our City well for the coming year, and represents our best work yet partnering to deliver services that empower everyone to thrive.”
“The 2019 budget success was made possible with the collaborative efforts of the Common Council and the Administration,” said City Controller Jennifer Hockenhull. “Open, sustained communication with Council and residents allowed us to assemble a budget which will deliver neighborhood enhancements, resident engagement efforts, and business development. We appreciate everyone’s effort throughout the process.”