Pierce County Council adopts biennial budget, making significant investments in public safety, human services and parks
The over $2.4 billion 2020-2021 biennial budget (Ordinance 2019-86s) was unanimously adopted by the Council, making significant investments in public safety, human services and parks. The budget takes effect Jan. 1, 2020, pending signature by the County Executive.
In 2018, the voters approved a charter amendment directing the County to move to a biennial budget cycle. After considerable review, analysis and debate, I am proud that the Council has adopted a budget that best serves the needs of Pierce County residents," said Doug Richardson, Council Chair.
Funding allocations in the 2020-2021 biennial budget reflect the priorities of both the Council and Executive departments with an emphasis on public safety, human services, parks, economic development and community services. Public safety and human service funding includes:
- $200,000 in additional funds for the expansion of the Mobile Crisis Intervention Resource Team (MCIRT) to the Key and Gig Harbor Peninsulas
- Addition of a Sheriff’s Detective and Sergeant position
- $700,000 to the Safe Streets program
- $1.2 million for the Crystal Judson Family Justice Center
- $10,000 to provide housing for people experiencing homelessness in inclement weather
- Funds for the Pierce County Sheriff to provide Naloxone training and distribution to all Sheriff Deputies
- $50,000 to conduct an evaluation of underutilized space in the urban growth area, Pierce County Jail, as well as two locations in the City of Tacoma for homeless services
- $100,000 allocated to Coffee Oasis-Tacoma Project, Child Care Resource Homeless Child Care subsidy, and Tacoma Recovery Cafe
- Money for continued Opioid Task Force support and implementation
- $15,000 to the Washington Soldiers Home-Orting Veterans Village
- Additional funds for a District Court Pro-Tempore to assist with increased District Court workloads
- $200,000 of matching funds to the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department Maternal Smoking Cessation Program
The Council also provided significant funding in the biennial budget to Pierce County Parks, economic development programs, and community services which include:
- Proviso for up to $425,000 for the Planning and Public Works Department to conduct solid waste community clean-up events in unincorporated urban and rural areas
- $120,000 to the Lidford Playfield and $80,000 to Frontier Park fair buildings for maintenance improvements
- Funding for a new part-time Economic Development Specialist to support arts programming and creative businesses within Pierce County
- $250,000 to update the County’s Sustainability 2020 Plan and coordinate countywide efforts to implement the plan’s goals and policies
- Establishment of a Sustainability Manager to manage and administer Pierce County’s countywide efforts
- $50,000 of partnership funds with City of Tacoma, Port of Tacoma, Metro Parks Tacoma, and Foss Waterway Development Authority to establish public boating access to the waterway
- Addition of a Parks Maintenance Tech and a Construction Manager for Pierce County Parks and Recreation to help open park and trails sites
- $150,000 for feasibility, planning, engineering and phase one construction to develop the Cascade Water Alliance Flume Trail project
- $50,000 for low-income food subsides through the Tacoma Farmers Market
- Matching funds for Frontier Park Horse Arena Cover and Footing projects
- $50,000 for a Parkland-Spanaway Business Study to investigate the benefits of creating a business improvement district or other means to strengthen business in the area
The approved budget will now be sent to County Executive Dammeier. He has 10 days to review and act on the 2020-2021 biennial budget.
For more information on the budget, visit piercecountywa.gov/biennialbudget.
Erin Babbo, communications specialist