HARTFORD, CONN. (April 16, 2018) – Today, Mayor Luke Bronin submitted his Fiscal Year 2019 Recommended Budget (FY2019) to the City Council for their review and approval.  This budget retains $27 million in cuts to services and personnel made in the last two budgets, in addition to $10 million in achieved labor savings.  The budget delivers core services, with a priority on public safety, basic quality of life, and support for the most vulnerable residents.

Overall, this budget calls for total spending that’s $2.3 million less than last year’s adopted budget, excluding debt and capital investment expenditures.  The budget is balanced without any one-time revenues, without any asset sales, and without deferring pension obligations.  The budget does not include any new borrowing.

The Council must approve a budget by May 31, 2018.  Please see the Mayor’s budget message and executive summary here.

“This is another no-frills budget that brings us another step towards stability,” said Mayor Bronin.  “In the last two years, we’ve made tens of millions of dollars in difficult cuts, and we’ve achieved significant labor savings in partnership with our unions, saving us $10 million for the coming year.  Combined with those efforts, the Contract Assistance agreement authorized in last year’s bipartisan budget and concluded with the State last month, along with the financial commitment of three of our largest insurance companies, gives us an opportunity to put the City of Hartford on stable fiscal ground for the first time in many years.  We now need to use this period of stability to focus on the long-term goal of true sustainability and strength — which depends upon continued discipline, continued savings, continued partnership, and significant economic growth.”

The budget includes:

·      Retained cuts of $27 million to services and personnel made in Fiscal Years 2017 and 2018.

·      $10 million in savings from labor agreements with four of the City’s largest unions.

·      Funding for a workforce that is 68% smaller than the workforce of thirty years ago (FY1989), and eighty positions smaller compared to Fiscal Year 2015.

·      Necessary funding for women’s shelters, No Freeze shelters, the McKinney shelter for men, and for summer youth employment and crisis intervention.

·      Funding for the hiring of approximately 60 new police officers to make up for attrition, and continued support for two large classes of firefighters, totaling 70 recruits, from last fiscal year.  Funding for firefighters comes primarily from an $11 million, multi-year federal grant the City won last year.

·      Funding for two zoning enforcement officials, which are necessary as the City currently has none, as well as funding for a Residential Rental Licensing Program phased in over multiple years, pending City Council Approval, to improve the quality of the City’s housing stock.  Both initiatives are funded by reallocating existing funding from departmental salary savings, and revenue from the Residential Rental Licensing Program is expected to cover the costs of staffing in future years.