New Haven's mayor lays out new budget proposal
New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker announced a proposed $662.7 million annual city budget on Wednesday. If approved by the city’s Board of Alders, the budget would increase funding for public safety, city parks and city employee salaries. It would also lower the mill rate and create a municipal office responsible for drafting future city budgets.
Elicker says that if adopted, the budget would increase $29.5 million from last year’s spending plan. The mayor said the city has seen more revenue from the state and from Yale University, raising the fund balance to $36.7 million.
The proposal also calls for 10 new police department positions.
“I’m proposing adding 10 new positions to the police budget, including some leadership positions, lieutenants, sergeants, detectives in addition to two new animal control officers and a crime analyst,” Elicker said.
The mayor’s office said 12 public safety positions would be created in total if the budget is adopted. According to Lenny Speiller, director of communications, an increase of $2,778,689 from 2022-23 police budget, which was $48,539,422.
New Haven Public Schools would get an additional $8 million for education and increased teacher salaries. The city would also establish an Office of Policy, Management and Grants, which would work on grants, budget proposals and municipal financial planning.
In addition to laying out his budget proposal, the mayor spoke about other objectives he has for the city, including lowering the mill rate. The mill rate would go from 39.75 to 37.20, a 6.42% decrease, representing a further tax reduction to homeowners, according to Elicker.
“It does all of this while also lowering the property tax rate for homeowners for the second year in a row,” he said.
Other departments would get more staffing, including city parks. According to the mayor’s office, public parks and spaces would get seven new staff members from caretakers to park rangers.
The alders are expected to vote on a budget by June 5.