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Posted on: November 21, 2023

Statement from Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan on Unanimous Passage of the 2024 City Budget

“This budget is transformational. This is a budget for city residents that makes historic investments in public safety, world-class recreation facilities, streets and sidewalks, walkability, sustainability, and the City’s workforce. 

With this budget, we will build a new Lincoln Park Pool, West Hill Community Center, and Hoffman Park Recreation Center. We will add social workers in each of our police stations, and we will implement a first-of-its-kind street treatment program alongside Albany County. We will repave dozens of streets, install more speed humps, and replace more traffic signals and crosswalks. We will install more EV chargers and continue converting our fleet to electric vehicles.

“This budget sends a clear message to the residents of the City of Albany about what we value: historic investments in public safety & mental health services, world-class recreation facilities, streets and sidewalks, walkability, sustainability, and our City workforce.

“I want to thank our Budget Director Gideon Grande, Commissioner of Administrative Services Ann Marie Salmon, Deputy Budget Director Kate Fitzpatrick, and Chief Financial Manager Joel Stetson for the months of hard work that went into creating a budget that very clearly reflects what we as a city value.

“I also want to thank the Common Council for their unanimous passage of my proposed 2024 City Budget. While I have concerns regarding the additional permanent spending that was included in the Council's amendments to this budget, we look forward to working with them to ensure we continue to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars.

“The outlook for Albany has never been brighter. We are ranked as the best place to live in New York State and a top-ten place to raise a family in the United States. More people are moving here, world-renown corporations are investing here, and we are beaming with hope, optimism, and pride. This budget will only further our mission to ensure we are an Albany for all for generations to come."

Mayor Sheehan’s 2024 City of Albany Budget:

 

2024 Proposed City Budgethttps://albanyny.gov/budget

 

Investing in Public Safety & Mental Health Services:

  • Thanks to major investment by Governor Hochul, New York State’s largest Crime Analysis Center at APD Headquarters is paying dividends:
    • Confirmed shots fired down 34%
    • Shooting incidents down 39%
    • Shooting victims down 39%
  • This budget ensures APD has every resource available to find those responsible for committing violent crime, arrest them, and hold them accountable
  • Investing $300,000 of Opioid Recovery Funding in partnership with Albany County to deploy teams of mental health professionals and housing resource specialists across the City, with a focus on Central Avenue, Lark Street/Washington Park, and Pearl Street
  • Adding social workers 27/7/365 at Center Station and South Station to address the mental health needs of victims and arrestees who experience crisis while at our police stations
  • Restructured medical emergency response agreement with City’s medical transportation provider to meet the needs of our residents and visitors and ensure an additional medical transport team is available during peak service times at our local emergency rooms

 

$25 million Albany for All program:

  • The Albany For All program is already having a direct impact on our entire city:
    • CARES of NY, Inc. has prevented more than 70 evictions
    • Northern Rivers has helped more than 200 people access housing, food, and financial support when they need it most
    • Capitalize Albany, the Downtown BID, and the Central Avenue BID provided small businesses nearly $1 million in grants
    • Habitat for Humanity built 6 new affordable houses and 10 more are in the development pipeline
    • The City of Albany purchased 520 Livingston Avenue – a site that is envisioned to be home to the future West Hill Community Center
  • In 2024, the Albany For All program will go even further to make transformative investments in our community:
    • Renovation of Hoffman Park Recreation Center
    • Additional Habitat for Humanity Homes becoming available
    • Opening of Clinton Market Collective
    • Installation of Downtown Wayfinding
    • Round 2 of BID Small Business Grants

 

Creating World-Class Recreational Facilities for Our Residents:

  • Nearly half of the 2024 Capital Plan invests in our parks, pools, and community centers
    • $15 million to build a new Lincoln Park Pool
    • $10 million to build a West Hill Community Center
    • $5.4 million to upgrade the Hoffman Park Recreation Center
    • $1.6 million to restore Tivoli Preserve
    • $1.0 million to rehabilitate Tricentennial Park
    • $325,000 to revitalize Whitehall Park and Six Mile Waterworks Playgrounds
    • $200,000 to rebuild Hackett Park Spraypad
    • $100,000 to reimagine Madison Park

 

Historic Infrastructure Investments:

  • $19 million in streets & sidewalks
  • $1.0 million to expand the Traffic Speed Reduction Pilot (Speed Humps)
  • $4.5 million for Traffic and Pedestrian Safety improvements, including new crosswalks and signals
  • Reimagining the Department of Engineering to include Traffic Engineering, Building Maintenance, Engineering, and Permitting

 

Investing in Our Youth:

  • $1.8 million to continue our award-winning, nationally recognized Summer Youth Employment Program
  • $600,000 to expand Youth Employment Program beyond summer (January to June)

 

Investing in the City’s Workforce:

  • Living wage increasing by 4.9% - up to $18.37
  • Vacancy rate declined by 29% year over year
  • Currently settled with 12 of 13 bargaining groups
  • For our Police Officers:
    • Additional step increases from 5 to 8 years of service
    • Longevity for Officers with 18+ years of service increased for Police Officers from $3,000 - $5,000 to $4,000 - $6,0000

 

Investing in Our Future:

  • More than half of the electricity purchased by the City is generated from renewable sources
  • $1 million in 2024 for EV Chargers and Electric Service planning
  • $11 million in 2024-28 plan to provide infrastructure to convert City fleet
  • Enhancing our Climate Action Plan:
    • Development of climate adaption and mitigation responses
    • Focus on both government operations and the community at-large
    • Prioritization of climate justice through community engagement and actionable outcomes

 

Securing Non-City Resources:

  • $11.3 million for Roadways
  • $3.9 million for Infrastructure and Recreation Facilities
  • $2.6 million for Youth & Workforce Development
  • $650,000 for Sustainability Efforts
  • $1.8 million for Urban Forestry over next five years
  • $1.8 million for Gun Violence Elimination Program
  • $480,000 for Mental Health and Substance Abuse Programs
  • $2.4 million for other Public Safety and Health Efforts

 

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