RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney unveiled a revised plan for next year’s budget on Monday that cuts pay raises for city employees and plans for new jobs but aims to maintain funding for schools, fixing roads and other priorities laid out before the coronavirus pandemic led to a $38.5 decrease in the budget.
The budget plan originally presented by the mayor in March was based on a projected revenue of $782.6 million, but as COVID-19 prompted a state of emergency in Richmond the city’s projected revenue dropped to $744.1 million.
“This international crisis is forcing local governments everywhere to make tough, sometimes heartbreaking decisions when it comes to budgets,” Stoney said in a statement. “In Richmond, we’re blessed with a team unified around our shared values: equity, opportunity, and fiscal responsibility to our residents. This adjusted budget reflects those values.”
Stoney’s office provided a list of some of the adjustments, however a list of the finalized amendments will be made available once they are submitted to the city council by April 20.
These items were funded in the original FY21 budget but will be eliminated:
- 2 percent salary increase for employees;
- Step increases for public safety personnel and base salary increases for public safety recruits;
- Nearly $9.4M in currently funded full-time and part-time employee positions, and the elimination of 12 proposed new positions throughout the administration, including in Citizen Service and Response, Parks and Recreation, Human Services, and the City Attorney’s office, among others;
- Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities workforce development program for returning citizens;
- Doula program run through the Richmond City Health District;
- History and Culture Commission operating budget; and
- Several non-departmental allocations to nonprofits that did not receive funds in FY20.
The following items saw an increase in the original FY21 budget but have now been brought to FY20 funding levels:
- The Affordable Housing Trust Fund, which was slated to receive $3.5M but will now receive $2.9M;
- The Eviction Diversion Program, which was slated for a $201k increase but will now receive $485k; and
- Many non-departmental allocations to nonprofits that received funds in FY20.
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