October 5, 2020

Seattle City Council Finalizes 2020 Rebalance Package

Faced with a $300 million budget shortfall due to the Covid-19 pandemic response, the Seattle City Council held virtual meetings over several weeks this summer to rebalance and address the shortfalls in the City’s budget and to consider proposals to increase revenue. After several hours of public comment, meeting deliberations, and negotiations among the legislative and executive branches of the city, the City Council’s near unanimous votes on Tuesday to reassert their commitment to their budgeting decisions marks the end of the 2020 budget rebalancing. Now the city must almost immediately turn to planning for the next biennial budget.

Budgets are living, moral documents that reflect our priorities. We applaud the City Council for listening to the needs of the community over hours of public comments and for responding proactively to the current and future needs for housing and essential services and programs. More specifically, we support the City Council’s decision to remain steadfast in their commitment to 

Implement a spending plan for the JumpStart Seattle Tax that includes funding to address the economic hardship of early learning providers, homelessness and housing insecurity, and affordable rental and owner housing

Move swiftly to accept and execute on non-city funding sources to support affordable housing and homelessness including necessary services and programs

Include resources to pursue community-led public safety research and community-based public safety programs

Despite tumultuous debates and disagreements about the best approaches for community safety and investments, we remain confident that the legislative and executive branches of the City of Seattle will engage in dialogue with each other and the community for the next biennial budgeting process set to start soon. Mayor Durkan’s proposed budget has recently been released. We look forward to advocating on behalf of affordable housing, early learning, and other essential community programs and services.

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