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Breathing Room for the City Budget
Proposed FY 2019 city budget features sunnier projections
News Story  August 9, 2018, by Michael King
"...That's one takeaway from the FY 2019 proposed city budget formally presented by City Manager Spencer Cronk Monday afternoon at the Mexican American Cultural Cen­ter. Although the budget staff continues to track revenues and expenditures traditionally, by individual city departments, the proposed budget will also be macro-organized by six City Council-defined "strategic outcomes":..."

Council Budget Afterthoughts
Council members offer post-approval thoughts on FY 2016 budget
DAILY News  September 18, 2015, by Michael King
"...Late last week, shortly after City Council approved the Fiscal Year 2016 budget, we asked Council members if they had any brief post-mortem thoughts on the new budget, and if their own priorities had been fulfilled/partially fulfilled/not fulfilled. Not all members responded; the following are the (very lightly edited) answers we received...."

If We Had Budget Enough, and Time ...
Council closes in on a final FY 2017 city budget
News Story  September 8, 2016, by Michael King
"...City Council resumes budget deliberations today, Sept. 8, planning a nearly full day of work around a midday meeting of the Audit and Finance Committee..."

City Budget: First Forecast
Budget forecast shows rising city income, costs
News Story  April 30, 2015, by Michael King
"...It's still very early in the city's budget process, but last Wednesday, April 22, city budget staff presented to City Council the city's five-year financial forecast, with an emphasis on the anticipated budget for Fiscal Year 2016 (beginning Oct. 1)..."

Hitting the Budget Barbells
The annual city budget workouts begin, and you're all invited
News Story  June 25, 2010, by Wells Dunbar
"...The city budget returns, and with it, all the perennial questions accompanying the annual ritual...."

Council: Yes, We Have a Budget
Members approve $3.9 billion budget for next fiscal year
News Story  September 21, 2017, by Michael King
"...City Council completed three days of "budget readings" at around 10pm last Wednesday, and thereby dodged an extra day of deliberations tentatively scheduled for Thursday. The latter was a late addition, as two days earlier it began to seem likely that council members wouldn't be ready to make final decisions in the three reading days historically allotted for formal budget approval – indeed, not too long ago (pre-10-1), the three officially required readings were accomplished on Monday morning, with the rest of the day defaulted to R&R. [inset-1-right]..."

City Budget: Minimal Slippage
Sparse cuts, few surprises in proposed fiscal document
DAILY News  July 23, 2008, by Wells Dunbar
"...The budget process has changed under Marc Ott to become more open – traditionally called the City Manager's budget, Ott was quick to note "we've all had a hand" this year; is that to spread credit or blame? Still, some of the old razzle-dazzle persists – as this morning's reveal of the proposed 2008-09 City of Austin budget showed. Take for instance the stage-managed closure of an earlier-predicted $25.3 million "budget gap"..."

Point Austin: Budget in a Box
The budget year begins with the annual forecast
News Column  April 23, 2015, by Michael King
"...I'm writing this column with the reassuring drone of ATXN.TV in the background, as the city's budget administrators deliver the annual financial and budget forecast to the new City Council. It's a fairly elementary presentation – not only because this Council is virtually all rookies, but because these are very preliminary numbers, and the firmer ones won't arrive for some weeks..."

Live-Blogging the FY 2008 Budget
Just what the title says!
DAILY News  July 26, 2007, by Wells Dunbar
"...UPDATE: You can find the city's proposed budget online here. There's no one in City Hall chambers for the budget presentation! No one! Where's Debbie Russell? Alright, more folks have filtered in. Toby Futrell, clad in an intense purple, seems a little subdued, having just returned from the Executive Session where they discussed her replacement..."

City Budget: Room to Move
Council nears final decisions on 2019 budget
News Story  September 6, 2018, by Michael King
"...City Council gathers today, Thursday, Sept. 6, for a special called budget meeting, hoping to give final shape to the fiscal year 2019 budget..."

House Passes Budget
Reps unanimously approve $178 billion proposal for 2010-11 a bit before dawn
DAILY News  April 18, 2009, by Richard Whittaker
"...Around 7pm last night House Appropriations Committee Chair Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, said he doubted the House could pass the state budget all in one day on Friday...."

Council: Proposed Budget Takes the Stage
City manager and budget staff lay out FY 2017 budget
News Story  July 28, 2016, by Michael King
"...On Wednesday morning, a somewhat diminished City Council heard the formal presentation of City Manager Marc Ott's FY 2017 city budget. (Mayor Steve Adler and Council Members Ann Kitchen, Leslie Pool, and Sheri Gallo were out of town.) There were no major surprises – the big numbers haven't shifted much from the April forecasts, and the staff budget even manages a bit of wiggle room for at least a few of Council's wish-list priorities...."

State Budget Estimate Up, But Much Already Spent
Texas prepares for second half of grand bait and switch
DAILY News  January 7, 2013, by Richard Whittaker
"...As the Texas Legislature prepares to reconvene tomorrow, there's some good budget news from Comptroller Susan Combs with a healthier-than-expected budget revenue estimate...."

Council: Budget Crunch Time [UPDATE]
City Council continues final number-crunching
DAILY News  September 9, 2016, by Michael King
"...With budget-reading days looming – Sept. 12-14 – Council spent Thursday afternoon reviewing final possibilities for cutting, increasing, or moving funds..."

Budget Deal Evicts Planned Parenthood From Cancer Program
Under new budget deal, Planned Parenthood ousted from life-saving cancer program
News Story  May 28, 2015, by Mary Tuma
"...Low-income, insured women would no longer be able to turn to Planned Parenthood for state-supported breast and cervical cancer screenings, under a recently negotiated state budget compromise...."

'Alternative' Budget Battle?
Belts are tight but not for one senator's pet project
DAILY News  January 25, 2011, by Jordan Smith
"...Times are tough all over – school funding is in peril and who knows what'll happen to health care for low-income children. But there is at least one budget item that seems not only safe, but also that the Senate would like to see get a sizable funding boost...."

Austin ISD Budget: $1.4 Billion
Trustees approve budget for 2018-19 school year
News Story  June 21, 2018, by Austin Sanders
"...The Austin Independent School District's Board of Trustees voted Monday night to approve a $1.4 billion budget for the upcoming school year – about $11.9 million less than last year. Key provisions include: funding an across-the-board raise of 1.5% for district employees, at a cost of $8.1 million; funding for 75 nurses and 48 clinical assistants across 130 campuses (meaning not every campus will be staffed with a full-time nurse, and nearly half of the campuses with on-site mental health centers will lose their therapists); five more AISDPD officers, an officer specializing in mental health, and other security measures at a cost of $1.7 million..."

Proposed City Budget Unveiled
Staff presents FY2016 $3.5 billion “All Funds” budget
DAILY News  July 30, 2015, by Michael King
"...City Council resumed budget review this morning, with the presentation of City Manager Marc Ott’s proposed FY2016 budget: $3.5 billion All Funds (1.1% increase); $906.7 million General Fund (6.2% increase); and a 48.14 property tax rate (up from 48.09)...."

Budget Busters or Busted Budget
Conference committee to close $11 billion gap
DAILY News  May 9, 2011, by Richard Whittaker
"...Gov. David Dewhurst announced his appointees to the Budget Conference Committee, the five senators that will join five state reps to finalize the 2012-13 biennial budget..."

LBB: Budget Kills 335,000 Jobs
GOP lawmakers ignore their own experts by pushing for cuts
DAILY News  March 25, 2011, by Richard Whittaker
"...It's official: House Bill 1, the draft state budget for the next two years, will kill almost 150,000 private sector jobs...."

Cap Met Budget Proposals Start Flying
Board member suggests protections for poor; staff says stimulus money could forestall fare increases
DAILY News  August 28, 2009, by Lee Nichols
"...Maneuvering has begun on the Capital Metro budget, which will be discussed by the full Cap Met Board Monday, with publication of the proposed FY2010 numbers to happen the next day and final approval to take place in late September. One board member and the Cap Met staff have each made major pitches to be considered at that meeting...."

Central Health Faces Questions Over Budget Transparency
Commissioners to vote on the health district's FY 2017 budget on Sept. 20
News Story  September 15, 2016, by Mary Tuma
"...Ahead of adopting its 2017 fiscal year budget, Central Health is fielding questions related to transparency and accountability...."

Live-Blogging the City Budget Adoption
Continuously updated blog of the budget adoption.
DAILY News  September 10, 2007, by Wells Dunbar
"...So here we are – about to start adoption of the final Fiscal Year 2007-08 Budget for the City of Austin. But, despite there being three days scheduled to do so, odds are your boy won't be typing that long..."

Don't Spend That Budget Yet
Has the Lege really given out any more money in that megabudget? Even state agencies don't know.
DAILY News  June 12, 2007, by Richard Whittaker
"...When is a budget raise not a budget raise? When you're the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Under its latest budget, the agency has $182 million extra for state and local parks. However, the guardians of Texas' wilderness have had their budgets slashed for years, including a 5% cut in 2006-'07, and while they're happy at the cash, it may not really mean any percentage increase. "A percentage based on what?" said TPWD spokesman Tom Harvey..."

Trump Budget Wants Congress to Rewrite Federal Immigration Law
But that budget? DOA. (We hope.)
News Story  June 1, 2017, by Michael King
"...The proposed Trump administration federal budget – described variously as "dead on arrival" or "dead before arrival" (and that's by Republicans) – has been roundly denounced, as it should be, for cutting basic social safety net programs and undermining public schools, while spiking military spending. But the draft features other Trumpian surprises – for example, buried in an appendix is a provision that would rewrite federal immigration law to tighten the screws on alleged "sanctuary cities." Attorney General Jeff Sessions has grudgingly acknowledged that Immigration and Customs Enforcement "detainer requests" are exactly that, and not binding on local jurisdictions – so the budget asks Congress to rewrite the law to require local law enforcement to comply with any requests issued by ICE, and to enable the Department of Justice to sanction (through funding denials) any jurisdiction that fails to comply with such "requests" (thereby making a mockery of the term itself)..."

Budget, Contracts, and APD
Activists press City Council on police accountability
DAILY News  April 24, 2017, by Michael King
"...City Council’s April 20 agenda was relatively light, and the regular meeting adjourned at a merciful 8:30pm. But the week carried plenty of business, with CodeNEXT on Tuesday, budget preview on Wednesday, and Thursday's advocate and activist pressure on policing...."

Council Budget Is Finally Here
Includes a landmark living wage increase
DAILY News  September 11, 2015, by Amy Kamp
"...On Thursday, Sept. 10, Council (finally) passed a budget for FY 2016...."

Texas Budget Ping-Pong Begins
Chambers now start carving away at each other's proposals
DAILY News  March 24, 2013, by Richard Whittaker
"...Budget rubber met the spending road this week at the House of Representatives got its hands on Senate Bill 1, the Senate's draft budget for the next biennium. In the proposals out of both chambers, Texans saw what they expected: A legislature that has seemingly never heard of inflation, and forgot about its 2011 cuts...."

Budget Cuts and a Ban on Planned Parenthood Leads to Decline in Services for Texas Women
Numbers show decline in clients served
DAILY News  October 17, 2012, by Jordan Smith
"...Data from the Department of State Health Services shows that from December 2011 through May 2012, the state's family planning program contractors served half as many clients as they did during the same period the previous year. A decline was expected after last year's budget cuts, but advocates say the drop does not bode well for the health of Texas women...."

Eff This Budget
CPPP sharply disses the nearly adopted budget
DAILY News  May 27, 2011, by Katie Tomasino
"...Slashing funding to education, public services and healthcare – all the lifelines a community needs to thrive – is what the 2012-2013 budget has in store for Texans. Even at this late date, there are some groups, however, continuing to raise their voices for a more reasonable solution...."

Cap Metro Wants Budget Input
Forums to be held around town in early June
DAILY News  May 21, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Capital Metro is in the early stages of planning its FY 2011 budget and wants the public's feedback on how it should spend agency money (including your tax dollars, the 1% sales tax it collects from businesses within the Cap Met service area). It will do so at a series of workshops in early June; press release from the agency follows:..."

A New Budget Shell Game
Request for five percent agency spending cut doesn't add up
DAILY News  January 16, 2010, by Richard Whittaker
"...Gov. David Dewhurst and House Speaker Joe Straus released a letter on Friday asking state agencies to submit plans to cut five percent from their biennial budget, approved back in June..."

Budget: Signed, Sealed, Deliverable
Texas House passed SB 1 142-2, now it heads to the governor
DAILY News  May 29, 2009, by Richard Whittaker
"...The House just blew its perfect record on unanimous budget votes after Reps. Joe Crabb, R-Atascocita, and Sid Miller, R-Stephenville, voted nay on the final version of Senate Bill 1..."

Ott's Bad News Budget
City manager announces hiring freeze, suspension of wage review
DAILY News  January 16, 2009, by Richard Whittaker
"...City Manager Marc Ott has just released a memo to all city employees with the subject line Budget Challenges that lays out a pretty bleak future for city spending and hiring...."

Budget Deal Evicts Planned Parenthood From Cancer Program
Under new budget, Planned Parenthood removed from cancer program
DAILY News  May 21, 2015, by Mary Tuma
"...Low-income, insured women would no longer be able to turn to Planned Parenthood for state-supported breast and cervical cancer screenings, under a newly released budget compromise...."

Straus' Budget Stretch
Committee member casts doubt on speaker's deficit proposals
DAILY News  May 12, 2010, by Richard Whittaker
"...On Tuesday Republican Speaker Joe Straus told the House Appropriations Committee that he is looking for "a balanced, no-new-taxes state budget." However, committee member Rep. Dawnna Dukes, D-Austin, warned that when it comes to filling an $18 billion budget hole, "It needs to be a balanced approach..."

Bipartisanship in the Budget
Isett, Anchia show that budget agreement don't just mean concessions
DAILY News  April 20, 2009, by Richard Whittaker
"...The consensus opinion about how the Texas House of Representatives handled Friday's budget debate is that it was an object model in passing major bipartisan legislation. More than one lawmaker confided that it was like the good old days of Speaker Pete Laney, or even Gib Lewis..."

Lege Lines: Guns, Islamophobia, & Budget Cuts
The Lege takes on guns, Islamophobia, and sets the draft budget
News Story  February 5, 2015, by Richard Whittaker


Brutal Budget Amendments Target Family Planning Funds
Deep cuts proposed for health programs, more money for GOP pet projects
DAILY News  April 1, 2011, by Jordan Smith
"...Lawmakers in the House are now debating amendments to House Bill 1, that chamber's budget bill. And, at present, lawmakers are considering amendments to Article II, health and human services funding – including amendments that cut services for family planning and preventative health services for women, children and families...."

Cap Metro STILL Wants Your Budget Input
Give feedback in person or online
DAILY News  June 4, 2010, by Lee Nichols
"...Newsdesk previously mentioned Capital Metro's budget workshops being held around town. Well, based on last night's very poor attendance (four) at the workshop held at the Little Walnut Creek Library, not many of you are jumping on the chance...."

City Council Clashes Over 2017 Budget
Competing ideas on how to spend $969 million
News Story  August 18, 2016, by Michael King
"...Although it's been out of the headlines for a week or two, City Council remains knee-deep in deliberations over the fiscal year 2017 city budget. In its largest incarnation, that's the $3.7 billion "All Funds" octopus, which includes not only the operational expenses or "General Fund" budget, but the "enterprise" departments, which are income-generating and essentially self-funding: most prominently, the utilities Austin Energy and Austin Water, but also the airport (Aviation) and the Convention Center..."

City Budget: Something's Gotta Give
Cooling economy, rising costs mean tough choices for City Council
News Story  May 11, 2017, by Michael King
"...The current city budget predicament has a fairly simple frame: For the coming fiscal year, 2018, costs are expected to rise about 5%, and incoming revenue is anticipated to rise by less than 5%. That's an oversimplification – in budgetary matters, the devil is very much in the details – but that was the base message delivered on April 29 by Deputy Chief Financial Officer Ed Van Eenoo..."

Budget Stretch Run
City money season at full speed – and the dollars are chasing the needs
News Story  August 2, 2013, by Michael King
"...Budget Timeline..."

Budget Games
As the economy improves, Council looks toward next year's budget
News Story  February 22, 2013, by Michael King
"..."We don't play games with the budget."..."

Budget Blackboard
Write 100 Times: AISD Needs More Money
News Story  June 20, 1997, by Roseana Auten
"...AISD Superintendent Jim Fox photograph by Alan Pogue When it came to making the budget for 1997-98, officials of the Austin Independent School District say they were forced to put the cart before the horse this time out. School officials on May 29 released a proposed budget for the 1997-98 school year of $457.5 million, representing a little more than a 10% increase, or $45.9 million, in spending over last year's budget of $411.5 million..."

Working the Budget
Council and staff review the preliminary numbers, with crossed fingers all around
News Story  June 9, 2016, by Michael King
"...The initial City Council budget work sessions ended with a flourish on June 1, an all-day meeting that spent most of its time, strictly speaking, off-budget. Beginning at 9am, Council spent roughly five hours discussing not the draft primary budget issues that occupied the first four work sessions – but the possibility of a November transportation bond package, and what it might contain..."

Taking Budget Mountain by Strategy
To balance the city's long-term accounts, financial discussions need to climb beyond the General Fund
News Story  July 23, 2010, by Wells Dunbar
"...Attempting to "take the mystery out of city finances" has been an oft-declared goal of City Manager Marc Ott, one he reiterated once more at the city's sole town hall on this year's budget, held in a Convention Center ballroom in June...."

Crash-Scene Budget
The budget balances, and stitching is transparent
News Story  July 31, 2009, by Wells Dunbar
"...Considering the 2010 city budget process began months ago, back in May, it's hard for a jaundiced City Hall observer not to meet City Manager Marc Ott's final proposed budget with any more than an anticlimactic shrug. Austin's sales tax woes – down almost 10% since January – have been out in the open all year..."

City Budget Squeezed Between Basic Costs and State Neglect
The city has $1.03 billion in taxpayer money. Here's where it's going.
News Story  August 10, 2017, by Michael King
"...Last week's city budget presentation began in tears – those of interim City Manager Elaine Hart, who choked up as she thanked her budget staff for their hard work in preparing her proposed fiscal year 2018 budget. "Budget staff, you know I love you," she told Budget Officer Ed Van Eenoo, then turned to Council..."

This Is Your City Budget
More police, vanishing grants, rising costs, and ... Jazzercise?
News Story  September 2, 2011, by Wells Dunbar
"...Not too long ago, conventional wisdom held that once City Council received the city manager's proposed budget – that annual assessment of local revenues and expenses, timed to coincide with the city of Austin's fiscal year turnover in October – the heavy lifting was largely over, and council would comb through the crumbs come budget adoption. The budget process has become less opaque over the years, with City Manager Marc Ott releasing dozens of metrics, survey results, and spending proposals each season..."

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