Contact: Lauren Laake (832) 393-3008
Houston City Council Passes Fiscal Year 2016 Budget
Late last night, City Council passed the $5.1 billion Fiscal Year 2016 Operating Budget which includes $2.3 billion from the tax-generated General Fund and the remainder in Special Revenue and Enterprise Funds. Council Member Martin, along with three of his colleagues, voted "no" against the proposed budget.
While this year's budget complies with the financial policy adopted by the City to maintain a fund balance of 7.5% of operating expenditures less debt, it does nothing to implement expense reduction amendments, decrease departmental funding or break the ongoing problematic issue of continued spending. Council Member Martin believes with the anticipated $126 million budget deficit projected in Fiscal Year 2017 (July 1, 2016 - June 30, 2017) that now is the time to reduce department expenses and implement a sound conservative budget which creates additional Fund Balance surplus for future years.
Council Member Martin offered several budget amendments that promoted a fiscally responsible approach to city budgeting; however, all but one failed. The purpose of the one successful amendment is intended to require all excess revenues and resources received in Fiscal Year 2016 above the $2,291,253,131 shall be designated to Fund Balance or the actuarially required contribution to the Houston Municipal Employees Pension System, Houston Fire Fighters Pension System and the Houston Police Officer Pension System.
To watch a recap of the City Council Budget meeting, please visit http://houstontx.city.swagit.com.