This story has been updated.
The Los Angeles City Council on May 21 passed a $9.9 billion budget for the upcoming fiscal year starting July 1, including $440 million to address the city’s homelessness problem and more than $260 million for street and sidewalk repair and maintenance.
On May 28, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti signed the $9.9 billion budget, which was 7.5 percent larger than the budget he signed last year. The $6.2 billion general fund represents an increase of $200 million.
The budget sets aside $458 million in “rainy day” funds, with $350 million going to the reserve fund.
The budget also allocates $440 million for a range of initiatives and programs to address the growing homelessness problem. Last year’s count found more than 34,000 homeless individuals within city limits; this year’s count, expected to be released in the next few weeks, is expected to show an increase. In Nov. 2016, voters approved Proposition HHH, which authorizes the sale of $1.2 billion in bonds to build permanent housing for the homeless; this year’s budget includes $275 million in bond sale proceeds. The $440 million also includes $36 million for shelters and related services and nearly $40 million for outreach and sanitation services.
Among the other budget initiatives: Speeding up of periodic refreshes of neighborhood community plans to once every six years from once every 10 years; an increase of $10 million to $41 million for sidewalk repair; $221 million for street repair and maintenance and expansion of the cannabis regulation department to 28 positions.
“This budget invests in bringing immediate relief to our homeless neighbors and the neighborhoods they live in, puts more money into fixing sidewalks and streets than ever before, increases the number of trees that will be trimmed, and boosts the number of police patrolling our streets and firefighters stationed in our communities,” Los Angeles City Councilman and budget committee chair Paul Krekorian said in a statement.
Economy, education, energy and transportation reporter Howard Fine can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @howardafine.