• Council Roundup: Budget moves toward adoption

    Published November 29 2018

    On Monday, councilmembers had their sixth discussion on the budget. The council provided final direction on the proposed 2019-2020 Operating Budget and 2019-2025 Capital Investment Program (CIP) plan prior to anticipated adoption on Monday, Dec. 3.

    The draft 2019-2020 biennial budget totals $1.7 billion, which includes $1.1 billion in operating expenditures, $72 million in special purpose expenditures and $534 million for the General and Utilities CIP. It advances the council’s three-year priorities and makes key investments in areas such as affordable housing, environmental stewardship, the Grand Connection, the Downtown Park Gateway and congestion management.

    The proposal also offers strategies to continue providing quality services while managing growth in expenditures. Measures to achieve a sustainable general fund include: ongoing implementation of health care strategies; a proposed 1 percent property tax in 2019 and again in 2020; and a proposed fire inspection fee starting in 2020.

    Additional background on the budget process can be found in the agenda packet materials.

    Comprehensive Plan amendments

    Later, the council studied five proposed amendments to the city’s comprehensive plan. The slate includes three privately-initiated amendments (City Dacha LLC, Bellevue Nursery and Red Town) and two council-initiated amendments (Grand Connection and East Main).

    The Planning Commission, which considers proposed comprehensive plan amendments each year, recommended all five. Councilmembers directed staff to prepare ordinances for Dec. 10 action on all but the East Main amendment.

    The council discussed options to continue review of the East Main amendment into 2019. The Growth Management Act requires a separate, emergency action to continue the review. That action is expected to take place on Dec. 10.

    More details are available in the agenda packet materials.