Houston City Council approved a $6.7 billion balanced budget for fiscal year 2024-25 that will focus primarily on public safety infrastructure and drainage.

Breaking it down

The city's general fund totals $3.3 billion, an increase of $74.3 million from FY 2023-24. The general fund is the main operating fund for the city and accounts for services such as public safety, public works, human resources, and parks and recreation.

Half of Houston's general fund budget will go toward the city's two public safety entities with the Houston Police Department seeing $1 billion of the budget and the Houston Fire Department receiving $593 million.

The budget also funds six police and five fire cadet classes.

More details

Council members approved the budget June 13 after sorting through more than 50 amendments that were submitted to Mayor John Whitmire's office last month.

Many of the items were withdrawn or sent to a committee for further consideration. Fewer than a quarter of items were supported by the administration. The approved amendments added roughly $12.8 million to the budget.
  • $8 million to fund a local drainage program
  • $4 million to conduct a sixth cadet class for the Houston Police Department, one more than originally proposed
  • $800,000 to fund a generator for a Kashmere Gardens Resilience Hub
The budget passed 15-2 with council members Tiffany Thomas and Edward Pollard voting against it.

Offering input

Pollard said he could not support the budget because the city is spending more than it's bringing in.

Whitmire closed a $160 million budget shortfall in May with one-time funding sources, but the FY 2024-25 budget does not include any new fees, tax increases or revenue sources going forward.

"We don't have any new revenue in this current budget," Pollard said. "We're going to have to start becoming more serious about our spending trends and our patterns within the city because all we're doing is enlarging our structurally unbalanced budget."

Whitmire said the FY 2024-25 budget is responsible and transparent.

"This budget is paid for," he said. "So now, after we go through the next months into the fall, cutting out duplication and waste, we will conduct audit reviews and come out with a good government proposal to the citizens of Houston, collaborating on the county, state and federal levels."

The new fiscal year starts July 1.