On Monday (July 31), Mayor Mitch Landrieu presented the proposed operating and capital budgets for 2018 to the New Orleans City Council. The $647 million proposed operating budget is balanced and includes investments in public safety, job creation, recreation and streets.
“Coming into office over seven years ago, we were forced to make some difficult decisions to begin rebuilding our city. Working closely with the City Council, we have achieved unparalleled success and New Orleans has become the nation’s greatest comeback story,” said Mayor Landrieu. “We were $97 million in the hole and facing old legacy costs, but with a clear strategy and close budget monitoring, we now have the highest credit-rating in New Orleans’ history and a new confidence in our city. Stabilizing and better managing the budget has allowed us to focus resources on top priorities. The 2018 budget will maintain many of the things outlined in the 2017 budget to continue this city on the path to success and prosperity. We will continue to focus on your priorities including public safety, job creation, recreation, streets, housing and quality of life. We remain committed to making progress and building on the fiscal successes we have already made. This is more than a budget. It is a roadmap to building the city of our dreams. And because of our hard work and dedication, the next mayor and city council of New Orleans will take over a stronger, more prosperous city.”
In July 2017, Mayor Landrieu hosted Telephone Town Hall meetings as part of the budgeting process. Over 3,400 residents listened, and many provided input.
Highlights of the proposed budget include:
- Prioritize money for enforcing minimum wage for City employees and contractors, and our local hiring policy
- Increase funding to support workforce development internships for high school students through YouthForce NOLA
- Allocate funding for the Office of Supplier Diversity to meet and exceed DBE goals
- Continue funding the NOLA Business Alliance to attract jobs and retail
Streets and Infrastructure
- $421 million investment in Capital Budget for street, drainage, water and sewer construction alone
Quality of Life
- Increase funding in the Office of Community Development to support the operations of the low-barrier homeless shelter
- Allocate funding for the City’s Equity Office so that City departments and leaders have the resources they need to ensure an equitable government
- $20 million for new and rollover investments in the City’s affordable housing initiatives
- Additional $5 million for City judgments and settlements
BUILDING FOR OUR FUTURE
- Finalized a historic $2 billion settlement with FEMA for repairs to roads and sewerage and drainage infrastructure.
- Fund street repairs for next few years through a bond measure residents passed that won’t raise taxes but will free up nearly $100 million for these repairs
- Set City’s fund balance at $56 million to end 2018.
- Propose Rainy Day Fund to set aside 5 percent of the general fund for cases of emergency
To view the proposed 2018 Operating and Capital Budgets, click here.