Increased funding for city youth programs and saving three neighborhood fire houses may depend on the number of motorists caught by city speed cameras, according to a plan proposed by City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young.
Young wants $17.1 million in modifications to Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's proposed $2.8 billion operating budget, which are built, in part, on increasing the expected revenues from speed cameras.
The changes include doubling funding for youth summer jobs, restoring funding to fire companies and double funding for after school programs, according to a proposal released to the media.
Young’s proposal would offset the increased spending in other areas by eliminating funding for open positions, transferring $6.5 million from the city’s health insurance reserve and increasing projected revenue from speed cameras by $3.5 million to match fiscal year 2012 projections.
The City Council has the power to cut from the budget but does not have the power to allocate or increase funding. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake closes a predicted $48 million deficit.
Ian Brennan, a spokesman for the mayor, said she has been working with the majority of council members on their budget priorities for more than a month.
"We’ll take a look at this proposal, which was just provided to us, we’ll review it and provide a more detailed response at that time," Brennan said.
Recommended Funding Increases:
Recreation Centers: $2.8 million
Youth Works Summer Jobs: $1.6 million
After School Programs: $4.6 million
Experience Corps: $152,000
Healthcare Benefit Changes: up tp $5 million
Fire Companies: $3 million