Tulsa City Council Unanimously Approves 2017-2018 Budget

<p>The Tulsa City Council unanimously approved the 2017-2018 budget.</p>

Wednesday, June 7th 2017, 8:14 pm

By: News On 6

The Tulsa City Council unanimously approved the 2017-2018 budget.

The $826.8 million budget includes all city funds, operations and capital funding from Improve Our Tulsa and Vision Tulsa while the general fund, used for most core services and operations, is $269.4 million of the total.

A news release says the budget was approved after months of meetings.

4/26/2017 Related Story: Tulsa Mayor Proposes $824 Million Budget

They said the budget process saw unprecedented cooperation as City leaders worked on budget solutions in a “give-and-take manner to address all issues and concerns.”

The City said it expects flat growth in the general fund for the fiscal year, but that priority investments for citizens will be possible due to Vision Tulsa, adjustments to the general fund, Amazon internet sales and more.

There will also be adjustments to utilities - water will increase four percent, sewer and stormwater will both increase nine percent.

The 2017-2018 fiscal year begins July 1. The utility rates will be effective October 1, 2017.

The City released a list of budget highlights that you can see below:

  • Largest one-year infusion of police officers in the history of the City of Tulsa. Three academies of 30 recruits each will allow 90 new officers to be hired to enhance community policing strategies in Tulsa. 
  • Adds three mowing cycles in the city of Tulsa for a total of eight cycles, representing a 77 percent increase in the level of mowing. 
  • Funds the operation of a Public Inebriate Alternative, a substance abuse alternative program that will free up valuable police manpower, decrease municipal courts’ caseload and jail intake, and help citizens with substance abuse. 
  • Implements a “Better Way” Program, an innovative solution to panhandling that partners with local organizations to help place individuals in beautification work programs that help citizens get back on their feet.
  • Replaces fire apparatuses and safety equipment that is over a decade old and will fund a fire academy of 35 firefighters with the possibility of adding an additional 60 firefighters if approved for the SAFER grant. 
  • Funds a satisfactory performance increase for all qualified City employees. 
  • Adds Sunday bus service for the first time in Tulsa Transit’s history.
  • Constructs a variety of new playgrounds throughout the Tulsa Parks system.
  • Funds Vision Tulsa economic development projects and major street construction projects with added staffing in street maintenance and traffic engineering.

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