Boston City Council approves $2.6 billion budget for the next fiscal year
The Boston City Council today unanimously approved a $2.6 billion budget for the next fiscal year as well as nearly $1 billion for the city’s public schools.
The funding marks a 5.2 percent, $128.5 million, increase over the current fiscal year 2013 budget, according to Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s office. The 12-member council also unanimously approved $937.4 million for the Boston Public Schools in fiscal year 2014 and $1.8 billion over five years for capital projects, Menino’s office said.
“I am pleased that the City Council approved this budget, the final one of my Administration,” Menino said in a statement. “It invests in all neighborhoods and continues to build on the strengths and relationships that have propelled Boston forward.”
The budget calls for a $42.2 million increase in property tax revenues, which will mean a 2.5 percent increase in people’s bills, an increase the city does almost every year, said John Guilfoil, a spokesman for Menino.
School funding will increase by $57 million. Debates over investment in city schools have featured prominently in early exchanges between the 13 candidates running for mayor, five of whom sit on the City Council.
Nearly $200 million from the capital investment plan is slated for projects breaking ground or already underway in 2014, including the revitalization of the Ferdinand building in Dudley Square, new recreational facilities for children at the Charlestown Navy Yard and West Roxbury Education Complex, renovations at the main branch of the Boston Public Library, and the construction of a new library branch in East Boston.
The budget, which will take effect when the new fiscal year begins Monday, also provides funding for a “smooth and stable transition” between Menino and his successor, the mayor’s office said.Todd Feathers can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @ToddFeathers.