Oakland, CA - On June 26th, the Council Budget Team passed amendments to the budget proposed by Mayor Sheng Thao.
In a statement addressing her approach, Councilmember Carroll Fife:
“While our Covid-induced budget shortfall is a grim reality facing public institutions across the country, we’ve found reconciliation through the Council President's Budget Team amendments in service of residents who’ve asked for clean, safe and healthy communities. In spite of the enormous challenges, we address some of the vital ways the public depends on its local government, from infrastructure needs to cultural support.”
With the passage of these budget amendments, District 3 will see:
Community safety ambassadors in D3 business corridors including First Fridays, KONO district, Jack London Square, Uptown/Downtown, the Black Arts Movement Business District, and more.
Equity-based traffic safety improvements that will that will include roll out based on a resident-based participatory budgeting process
Activation of Frank Ogawa Plaza, West Oakland’s 7th Street and more D3 spaces with cultural events including events supporting our cannabis equity permit holders
Numerous measures to increase equity and inclusion at Lake Merritt, including support for the Freedom Vendors Market, Park Stewards, improved parks maintenance and resources to increase safety and compliance
Long overdue investment in our public parks and open space activation including DeFremery Park and Pool and maintenance of family serving spaces like Children’s Fairyland
Budget Policy Directives (highlights):
Affordable Housing - development of a coordinated strategy with the Office of the Mayor, County of Alameda, as well as the State and Federal government for funding and policy that supports successfully exits of unhoused individuals from shelter into permanent housing
Community Safety - staffing and resource analysis of the Oakland Police Department to be conducted by the Office of the Inspector General to: identify current resources; determine the number of officers assigned to a particular geographic area; and decide how staffing and operational resources should be allocated.
Commitments To Affordable Housing And Tenant Protections:
Creating a Rapid Response Homeless Housing Acquisition Fund with $8.8 million. This fund supplements the $216 million, already in the Mayor’s proposed budget for affordable housing, in order to more rapidly create housing for unhoused residents.
Adding $1 million per year for tenant legal services.
Supporting housing and real estate development with: 1 full time staff position to coordinate appraisals of vacant properties for acquisition for homeless housing and of city properties for potential sale and redevelopment purposes; $50,000 for appraisals of potential land sales, development and acquisition; and $100,000 to support appraisals, seismic assessments, and environmental reports for affordable housing acquisition.
Available funds from Measure Q to program for parks maintenance ($1.6M), homelessness ($418k) and stormwater ($126k)
Commitments To Public Safety:
Adding community ambassadors to business corridors ($1 million each year)
Investing $2.8 million in violence prevention programs ($1.75 million per year in DVP grants)
Increasing traffic safety within District 3 with $100,000 per year for traffic safety around high collision areas.
Adding Human Resources staffing to hire and fill vacant MACRO crisis response positions more quickly as well as dedicating one (1) MACRO team to Oakland libraries.
Commitments To Arts & Culture:
Increasing Cultural Affairs grants by $300,000 each year.
Allocation of $1 million per year in parking revenue to advance equity and inclusion at Lake Merritt via vendor market and events; Park Stewards; parks maintenance; traffic safety around Lake Merritt; staffing for safety and compliance at the Lake.
Councilmember Carroll Fife is a part of Council President Nikki Fortunato Bas’ four-person budget team which included Councilmembers Rebecca Kaplan (At-Large), and Kevin Jenkins (District 6) in announcing these amendments. These difficult decisions came after weeks of hearings and community meetings where members of the public weighed in on the Proposed FY 23-25 Budget.
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