Explaining the budget adoption process in San Antonio, TX

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The City of San Antonio has officially begun conducting its annual survey for feedback on the upcoming Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 Budget.

You might be wondering how the seventh-largest city in the US can agree on how to spend over ~$3 billion in funds (based on FY 2022 adopted budget).

We think it’s safe to say that you’re probably not a-loan. That’s why we’re breaking down what goes into the city’s budget adoption process — after all, knowledge is priceless.

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Did you know that last year’s SATX budget was less than ATX‘s? | 📸 : @sharonmccutcheon

⏰ Time(line) is money

The City of San Antonio has updated its website with a budget calendar that has laid out its timeline for adoption. Here are important dates to keep in mind:

  • Thurs., June 30 | Survey Close Date
  • Month of July | Budget recommendations reviewed by City Manager and staff.
  • Thurs., Aug. 11 | City Manager presents FY 2023 proposed operating and capital budget + tax rates to city council.
  • Month of August | Community input on the proposed budget is gathered. Date, time, and location are decided for two tax rate public hearings + two budget public hearings.
  • Wed., Aug. 31 | First public hearing held
  • Thurs., Sept. 8 | Second public hearing held
  • Thurs., Sept. 15 | City council considers FY 2023 Annual Operating and Capital Budget + Ad Valorem Tax Rate ordinances as well as revenue adjustments adoption (i.e. CoSA votes).

💸 Let’s cash you up to speed

No, unfortunately money doesn’t grow on our beautiful cypress trees. Here’s a quick breakdown of the biggest contributors (based on last year’s budget):

  • $410.3 million — Current property tax
  • $361.2 million — CPS Energy
  • $336.5 million — City sales tax
  • $221.3 million — “Other”
  • $30 million — American Rescue Plan

💵 Put it on the bill

An in-depth document outlining last year’s adopted budget can be found on CoSA’s website. Check out this snapshot of how the city has allocated its spending:

  • $859.9 million — Public Safety Department (i.e. fire, police, parks police, etc.)
  • $338.8 million — “Other”
  • $104.7 million — Streets and infrastructure
  • $54.2 million — Parks & Recreation Department

Before you know it, we’ll have next year’s total budget. SATX residents still have less than two weeks to offer their feedback on this survey.

Make sure to stay up to date on other opportunities for feedback + meetings on SASpeakUp.

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