San Antonio residents are encouraged to attend public meetings to learn more about the city’s proposed $3.7 billion budget for fiscal year 2023-24, which begins Oct. 1.
City staff briefed council on the budget proposals Aug. 10. The FY 2023-24 budget, a slight increase over the FY 2022-23 budget of $3.4 billion, proposes 105 new police officers; 32 new firefighters and paramedics; 15 animal care positions; $137 million for bond-supported infrastructure projects; and additional $15.3 million to enhance street markings, crosswalks and traffic signals.
The FY 2023-24 budget also calls for cleaning up nonservice alleyways that are unused for trash pickup or utilities, and the introduction of a three-year program to install shades at 61 playgrounds.
Additionally, the proposed budget increases funding to clean up 700 homeless encampments, shelter 400 individuals and help keep people in their homes. The budget also increases funding to preserve affordable homes, expand homeownership access, prioritize tenants’ rights, and add four positions to help bring properties into code compliance and connect individuals with services when needed.
Local officials also said the city will propose a slight drop in the total property tax rate from $0.5416 to $0.5415 per $100 valuation. Council earlier this summer authorized increasing the city’s homestead exemption from 10% to 20% in an effort to give local taxpayers some relief.
What they’re saying
City Manager Erik Walsh said the city aims to expand its focus on basic services, such as public safety, streets, drainage and implementing bond-funded projects.
“This year’s proposed budget is a commitment to invest in long-term solutions to some of San Antonio’s most critical issues, as identified by the City Council and our residents,” Walsh said in a statement.
Mayor Ron Nirenberg echoed Walsh’s sentiment.
“While providing significant property tax relief for the second year in a row, this budget increases our investment in public safety, including a boost of 26% to the animal care services budget,” Nirenberg said in a statement.
What happens next?
Council is scheduled to meet Sept. 14 to formally act on the proposed budget and tax rate. Before that, the city will hold several public hearings citywide on the proposed budget and tax rate:
- Aug. 14: 6:30 p.m. at Mission Branch Library, 3134 Roosevelt Ave.
- Aug. 14: 6:30 p.m. at Alicia Treviño Lopez Senior Center, 8353 Culebra Road
- Aug. 15: 6:30 p.m. at Northeast Senior Center, 4135 Thousand Oaks Drive
- Aug. 16: 6:30 p.m. at San Antonio College Candler Gym, 1819 N. Main Ave.
- Aug. 16: 6:30 p.m. at Phil Hardberger Park Urban Ecology Center, 8400 NW Military Hwy.
- Aug. 17: 6:30 p.m. at Doris Griffin Senior Center, 6157 N. Loop 410 W., Ste. 410
- Aug. 19: 10 a.m. at Miller’s Pond Community Center, 6175 Old Pearsall Road
- Aug. 22: 6:30 p.m. at Normoyle Community Center, 700 Culberson Ave.
- Aug. 24: 6:30 p.m. at Second Baptist Church Community Center Gym, 3310 E. Commerce St.
- Aug. 30: 5 p.m. at City Council chambers, 114 W. Commerce St.
- Sept. 7: 9 a.m. at City Council chambers, 114 W. Commerce St.