Baltimore City Releases Preliminary FY19 Budget Plan

Baltimore City Mayor Pugh released her preliminary $3.45 billion budget plan this week, noting violence reduction as her highest priority. She proposes expanding the Safe Streets program from four sites to ten, investing in new crime-fighting technology, and bringing Strategic Command Centers to Baltimore’s eastern and western districts:

These “nerve centers,” where police gather and analyze the latest intelligence to enable them to act in real-time, have proven highly effective in Chicago and Los Angeles.

The operating budget totals $2.83 billion. Across all funding sources, the budget focuses:

  • $434.8 million towards education and youth engagement,
  • $905.8 million towards public safety,
  • $957.6 million for quality of life,
  • $147.4 million towards economic development and jobs, and
  • $143.9 million towards accountability and transparency.

The City plans to invest $90 million in the Baltimore City Public Schools, exceeding maintenance of effort requirements. In addition, $19 million in capital funding will support school HVAC and maintenance.

The City’s capital budget totals $618 million, with investments in “utility infrastructure, recreation and parks, affordable housing, public transit, libraries, and schools.”

City revenue forecasters project a revenue increase of $47.9 million to the General Fund, or 2.6 percent above fiscal 2018 adopted budget of $1.83 billion. None of that increase is attributed to additional income tax revenue generated as a result of federal tax reform. Real and personal property tax rates shall remain at $2.248 and $5.62 per $100 of assessed value, respectively. The City’s income tax rate is 3.2 percent, the maximum level allowed under state law.

Helpful Links

Mayor Pugh’s Statement on the Fiscal 2019 Preliminary Budget
Fiscal 2019 Preliminary Budget