Cambridge has released its proposed budget for the coming fiscal year, which begins July 1. The FY17 Budget Book is online and copies are available at libraries. The $574.6M operating budget is up 4.8% from the prior year. While property assessments continue to climb with market values, the residential tax rate remains very low compared to neighboring communities, and most residents will not feel the pinch because the city will contribute about $12m toward the tax levy. The school budget of $172.8M is up almost 7% and again represents about 30% of total spending. The City Council is scheduled to vote on the budget on Monday, May 23rd.
Prior to the Council’s vote there will be a series of public hearings at which staff present on key initiatives and answer councillors’ questions on specific items.
FY17 Budget hearings are scheduled on:
Thursday, May 5, 9am (Police, Fire, Traffic & Parking, IT, Purchasing, Personnel, Employee Benefits, Inspectional Services, Finance, License Commission and more)
Tuesday, May 10, 6pm (School Budget)
Thursday, May 12, 9am (Public Works, Water, Community Development, Human Services, Veterans Services, Health Alliance, Library, Historical Commission, Conservation Commission, Assessing, Public Investment and more)
If necessary, a final hearing will be held on Tuesday, May 17 at 9am.
The complete list of departments that will present at each meeting is posted here. All budget hearings will be held at City Hall and will be televised and live streamed. Public comment is welcome at the beginning and at the end of each session.
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Jan Devereux City Councillor Cambridge, MA