SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, May 5, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — Salt Lake City’s Mayor Erin Mendenhall announced the fiscal year 2021-22 budget in her annual budget presentation Tuesday.
“We face a truly unprecedented opportunity, one born of historic challenges and fiscal responsibility, but we have the chance to make a once-in-a-generation investment in our city and its people,” Mendenhall said.
“No one is going to give us a roadmap. But I believe that as Salt Lakers, as westerners, we’re ready to consider this last year a valuable education and pull together as we move ahead to make this place more welcome, dynamic, and secure for all its residents.”
The approximately $350 million general fund budget provides funding for the essential services the city provides and upon which residents and businesses rely, the news release said.
“Despite the challenging previous year, Salt Lake City is in a stable financial position thanks to the strong local economy and careful spending,” the news release added. “Additional funding streams from the American Rescue Plan and increased bonding capacity will make long-awaited and requested capital improvements possible.”
Implementation of Commission on Racial Equity in Policing Recommendations
- $450,000 to hire six additional social workers to the Community Connection Center.
- $200,000 for additional equity, inclusion and diversity training for police officers.
- Creation of senior-level position in Mayor’s Office for work with education partners on equity and justice issues, including how School Resource Officers work.
- $20,000 for the Peer Court program, offering alternative ways for youth to be held accountable for their actions, outside of the criminal justice system.
Affordable Housing and Homelessness
- $11 million for affordable housing funding
- Over $4.7 million for RDA projects that combined with existing funds will allow the City to construct/preserve 350 affordable units, among other projects
- Over $4.4 million in federal funding for housing programs that
- Provide rent assistance for people with AIDS/HIV
- Repair/accessibility small loans, permanent supportive housing, down payment assistance
- New affordable housing units
- Emergency rental assistance for those experiencing homelessness or to prevent homelessness
- Nearly $1 million to go toward the Community Commitment Program for public safety and outreach coordination to assist unsheltered residents.
Proposed Community Reinvestment Sales Tax Bond in addition to budget at no additional cost to residents
- Potential for $50 million for new capital projects .
- $10 million to convert the dilapidated former water park on city property located at 1200 West 1700 South into a regional park the caliber of Liberty or Sugar House park.
- Shore-up other historic buildings in the city so they can be reutilized, like the buildings at Allen Park, Warm Springs Park in the Marmalade District, and the Fisher Mansion in Poplar Grove.
- Quiet all train horns on the west side of the city in neighborhoods that have long been disproportionately affected by noise pollution. Through this bond, the city can fund the infrastructure improvements needed to create quiet zones and safe train crossings so that all nearby residents can have a calmer, quieter quality of life.
- Other proposed plans for the bond include:
- The implementation of the next phase of the Foothills Trails System Plan
- Storage and equipment to reutilize wood from downed trees in the city
- The Complete Street transformation of 600 North
- Improvements to the Jordan River
- Multilingual Wayfinding Signage in our parks and open spaces; and
- Westside Neighborhood Park improvements
To read Mendenhall’s budget speech in English click here.
To read Mendenhall’s budget speech in Spanish click here.
To view Mendenhall’s proposed FY 21-22 Budget visit www.slc.gov/2021Budget.