City Council to Consider Fiscal Year 2021–22 Recommended Operating Budget Focused on Responding to Community Needs and Reimagining City Services

Emerging from the COVID-19 Pandemic Seeking Better Lives for All in our Community

The past year has been extraordinary. A cascade of crises — health, economic, environmental, social, civic, and political — have sparked enduring community, organizational and personal traumas. This deeply difficult period affects our community and our workforce, our City budget, and our priorities.

The Recommended Budget incorporates the City Council endorsed financial and community recovery strategy to help our community and organization meet the health, economic and social challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic — nicknamed the “Three R’s” — Respond. Restore. Reimagine.

$7. 35 Million Dedicated to City Council Priorities for the Community

Thanks to one-time federal funds to offset lost revenue, the FY 2021–22 Recommended Budget includes one-time contributions to advance City Council priorities and respond to community input and feedback. Recommendations include increasing funding to expedite work already underway, as well as new initiatives to inject momentum into our efforts related to inclusion, diversity, accessibility and leadership in Redwood City. We thank you for being engaged!

Here is a snapshot of some of the initiatives that respond to public feedback we have received:

Support for Community Members Experiencing Homelessness and Housing Insecurity
Supporting the unhoused members of our community continues to be a priority and a challenge for Redwood City. The City often hears from residents concerned about the impact of encampments on community life and from residents urging support for those currently living outdoors. Over the last three years, the City has committed an exceptional $2.5 million in City funding to support members of our community experiencing homelessness. This includes launching the successful Safe RV Parking Program and Downtown Streets Team, which you can read more about here. In addition to this considerable investment, the proposed budget includes an additional $1.0 million over two years to add civilian homeless outreach workers, establish a hotline for residents to report non-emergency issues regarding unhoused individuals without going through 9–1–1, and to examine alternatives to public safety staff interaction with homeless residents. These efforts are in addition to extensive work to meet community housing needs through an Anti-Displacement Strategic Plan, preservation of existing affordable housing, and production of new affordable housing.

But wait, there’s more…

The table below identifies all one-time allocations made during FY 2020–21 to address City Council priorities, as well as the $7.2 million in the FY 2021–22 Recommended Budget, and includes anticipated recommendations for FY 2022–23. In many instances, these funds build upon existing resources dedicated to these purposes in ongoing program operating budgets.

Reimagining Public Safety Services

With public safety representing more than half of the General Fund operating budget, it is essential to consider public safety as a key lever in transforming City services. In April 2021, the City hosted a community meeting on public safety budgets to begin this multi-year conversation. Preliminary budget decisions in both the Police and Fire Departments establish early steps on this journey.

Join the Conversation

To maximize time for live public comment, we encourage members of the public to provide comments by joining the City Council meeting via Zoom.

* Los servicios de interpretación al español estarán disponibles para la reunión del Ayuntamiento del 14 de junio *

Los servicios de interpretación al español para las reuniones del Concejo Municipal están disponibles para cualquier miembro del público que lo solicite. Para solicitar interpretación al español, comuníquese con la Oficina del Secretario de la Ciudad al (650) 780–7220 o CLERK2@redwoodcity.org a más tardar a las 5:00 p.m., el viernes anterior a la reunión del Consejo para asegurarse de que haya un intérprete disponible. Si los miembros del público desean brindar comentarios públicos durante la reunión en español, notifique también a la oficina del Secretario de la Ciudad antes de la reunión.

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