The Burien City Council approved a two-year budget last December. The budget continues funding for current programs and services and makes investments in key areas of need.
The budget includes funding from the American Rescue Plan Act to help the community recover from the pandemic, and other federal, state, and county grant sources to support important programs and services. The City Council increased the amount budgeted for the Human Services Fund from $6.92 per capita to $8.50 per capita, which will result in approximately $46,000 more per year that can be distributed to agencies providing social services in Burien.
The budget provides funding for both current and upcoming capital projects including funding for design of a new public works and parks maintenance facility and several street, park, public facility, and transportation improvement projects. Several major planning efforts, including updates to the City’s Comprehensive Plan, are also included in the budget.
The budget also gives City staff a cost-of-living increase and reflects salary updates based on a survey that compared staff salaries for the City of Burien to comparable and neighboring jurisdictions. The budget provides funding for programs designed to mitigate climate change and increases funding for human services and arts and culture grants.
“Overall, the budget maintains Burien’s current level of service while providing important strategic investments,” said Adolfo Bailon, Burien City Manager.
Development of the biennial budget was guided by strategic plan discussions, public input, and the City’s financial policies.
The City maintains a reserve account which provides a layer of protection against potential economic risk, unexpected costs, and one-time initiatives. Funding from this reserve account was required to present a balanced budget. No new taxes or fees were adopted as part of this budget.
“This budget strives to meet our community’s current needs while maintaining a healthy government operation,” said Mayor Sofia Aragon. “However, we will need to have conversations in the near future about ways to improve the long-term financial health of our city.”