Mayor Bill De Blasio presented the final version of his $78.3 billion city budget for the coming year on Thursday, along with a $83.8 billion capital strategy reaching over ten years.
After recent criticism of a lack of funding for mental health services in New York City – particularly in prisons and shelters – the Mayor’s budget includes $54 million for those services in community schools, family shelters and at Rikers Island.
The budget also included provisions to help the New York City Housing Authority out of the $77 million deficit it is currently running on. De Blasio’s plan waives $33 million per year which the authority currently pays the city in lieu of property taxes.
New York City’s most underfunded schools will get $33 million over the next year.
For the first time, the budget also puts aside $500 million into a fund for infrastructure and capital projects, and as a reserve in case of another financial downturn.
The overview released on Thursday was presented as “a cautious approach that is focused on targeted investments and aggressive savings,” mentioning savings achieved by stopping the out-sourcing of 51 jobs at the Administration for Children’s Services, and a plan for the Department of Environmental Protection to save $4.5 million by using methane from wastewater treatment plants as fuel.
The budget and capital plan will be further discussed by the City Council before being adopted by June 30th.