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Council Approves 2025 Tulsa Budget


This evening, the Tulsa City Council voted 8-0 to approve the proposed Fiscal Year 2024-2025 budget with a total of $1.033 billion. Councilor Grant Miller was absent.

 

This represents an increase of about $53.6 million, or about 5.5%, more than last year’s original budget.

 

The general fund budget is $408.9 million, about 2.8% more than the FY24 original budget. The general fund is the principal operating fund of the City.

 

“I’m so grateful for everyone involved in this process,” Council Chair Jeannie Cue said. “This budget is the result of hard work from our Mayor’s Office, the Finance team and all of our departments. Thank you to the residents who engaged in this effort so we could develop a budget that meets the public safety, animal welfare and neighborhood needs in our community.”

 

As part of the budget process, the City Council held one retreat with the Mayor to identify priorities, four Committee meeting discussions and two public hearings to get feedback from residents.

 

“This budget is a direct result of yet another collaborative effort between the Mayor and the City Council,” Council Vice Chair Phil Lakin said. “For over a decade we have engaged in a deliberate process to exchange ideas prior to the budget development through the Mayor/Council Retreat. I’m proud that this budget has allowed us to make progress on Tulsa’s collective priorities while ensuring economic stability for our community.”

 

The City Council worked with the Mayor and finance team to make the following changes to the budget proposed on April 17 to fund priorities identified in the Mayor/Council Retreat. These changes were made by identifying available funding sources and not by increasing the total budget amount.

 

Health, Safety & Housing:

 

  • Multi-Family Housing Inspection Scaling: $226,600 for new positions, vehicles and operational support

    • One new Neighborhood Inspector in the Department of City Experience

    • One new Code Inspector in the Fire Department

    • A recommendation of the Council Habitability Working Group that ensures safe and healthy living environments for residents of rental units. Helps protect housing stock and prevent evictions and homelessness as part of the Path to Home initiative.

    • More information: https://www.cityoftulsa.org/multifamily

 

  • Tulsa Animal Welfare Staffing: $231,000 for new positions and operational support

    • Two new Kennel Maintenance Workers

    • One new Animal Intake Officer

    • One new Animal Control Officer II

    • To provide better service and response to residents, increase level of care to industry standards, and ensure adequate and trained staff for new shelter facility. Supports the health and safety of residents, staff and animals.

 

Economic Development:

 

  • Fire Marshall Backlog: Utilizes existing funds

    • Reduces the eight-month backlog on approving fire prevention systems for businesses. Improves economic development, enabling businesses to open faster.

 

  • BMX Headquarters: $187,500

    • Matches funding from other sources to support the BMX facility’s pursuit of a designation as the official training site of the United States BMX Olympic team. Attracts tourism and boosts economic development.

Improving Revenue Sources:


  • Grant Writer: $30,000 

    • Matches $60,000 in private donations to hire a Grant Writer to apply for external funding and maximize federal dollars.

 

Next, the budget heads to the Mayor’s desk for signing. Fiscal Year 24-25 will begin July 1.

 

“I want to thank my colleagues on the Tulsa City Council and the staff in our City Finance Department for their dedication and hard work on this budget,” Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum said. “This marks my last budget season as mayor and I am grateful for the collaborative process we have established as stewards of taxpayer dollars. The result is a balanced budget that prioritizes fiscal stability and basic operations while laying the groundwork for our next mayor to fulfill the mandate given them by voters in the upcoming elections.”

 

Key items that the FY25 adopted budget funds, highlighted previously in the Mayor’s proposed budget, include:

  • Restores the City's emergency operating reserve to a level of 8.29% of the general fund

  • Protects compensation increases implemented over the past several years, providing for an across-the-board pay increase for all employees in the amount of 2% in the coming year

  • Enhances the Tulsa Fire side of the 911 Center by adding two positions

  • Provides for a new app that will give instantaneous direct connection between first responders and citizens

  • Follows through on significant capital projects, including operations of the new Public Safety Center and Zink Lake

  • Funds a 2-year program to convert City-owned highway lights to LEDs through the voter-approved PSO Franchise Agreement

  • Adjusts our utility rates to keep Tulsa in line with the cost to deliver service

  • 3% increase for water (does not impact residential customers inside city limits)

  • 3% increase for sewer

  • 15% for stormwater

  • 9% for refuse and recycling

  • Note, funding for the new Homeless Program Lead position has been moved to American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. This position will collaborate with City leadership and external stakeholders in the development, implementation and monitoring of City-led homelessness efforts as part of the Path to Home initiative.

An enacted fiscal year budget is the City’s financial blueprint, or spending plan, for the year. However, it is a plan that changes almost weekly through appropriations and other measures. The City Council must approve any change that totals more than $100,000. These changes will appear on the Council’s regular business agenda for review and vote. The Council provides avenues for public input on all items before voting and residents are welcome to contact their City Councilor directly on any issue. Contact information can be found here.

View the proposed budget, as of April 17, and the final version when available at the following link: https://www.cityoftulsa.org/budget

 

View the budget process and priorities, links to presentations and discussions, and more about how the budget works here: https://www.tulsacouncil.org/budget

 

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