MILWAUKEE — With his signature Thursday, Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley approved the county's budget for 2021.
At a press conference outside the county courthouse, Crowley made the budget official with Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson and County Supervisor, and Chair of the Finance Committee, Jason Haas.
The budget went to the executive's desk after the Board approved it last Monday. With a number of amendments passed, next year's budget sets the property tax levy at $303,968,779 - just under one percent more than this year's $301,109,336. County expenses are set at $1,180526,340.
Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson explained in a note earlier this week the budget now includes an amendment that earmarks nearly $2.5 million to be spent to improve parks, services that help youth and senior citizens, programs that help the homeless and strengthening the library system.
Watch the signing below:
Another three amendments explore a transition of the county's fleet of vehicles to electric rather than gasoline; improve safety at parks with better lighting; and create two positions to finalize the "Enterprise Platform Modernization project," which supervisors hope will improve the efficiency of county procurement, payroll, financial, and other services.
Racial justice was also a priority in the county budget. The Board approved amendments that encourage the Wisconsin Counties Association to adopt racial equity principles; allow the families of 'youth justice system-involved' youth to access programs designed to help them get back on their feet in the community; and an amendment that approves analyzing the possibility of establishing a “Right to Counsel” program to provide legal counsel for people facing eviction or foreclosure.
Supervisors John F. Weishan, Jr., Anthony Staskunas, Patti Logsdon, and Ryan Clancy voted “No” on the adopted budget, according to Nicholson.