Today, HSC sent a letter to the Mayor and Council asking that they fulfill their commitment to fund human services at an amount of 1% of the General Fund as required by Ordinance 153-2017 (the “1.5% ordinance”) that was adopted last year. The 1.5% Ordinance set into law Council’s commitment to fund human services in the amount of 1.5% of the General Fund budget by 2023, and established a schedule for attaining the 1.5% goal. Pursuant to that schedule, Council must appropriate human services funding in the amount of 1% ($4,060,000) in this year’s budget. However, the City Manager’s Recommended Budget allocates $1,269,828 below the 1% required by ordinance.
Unfortunately, over 1 in 4 of our residents, many of them children, live in poverty. These residents struggle to achieve many of the basics that we take for granted: safe housing, nutritious food, and the opportunity to support our families through work. The City’s human services funding is critical to many of these families. HSC will continue to advocate for the 1% set forth in the ordinance. Though 1% of the General Fund budget is nowhere near enough to meet the need of our residents, many of our members leverage this funding to increase funding available from other sources to help meet the needs of the families that they serve.