Fort Worth, Texas – In a highly anticipated announcement on Tuesday morning, the City of Fort Worth unveiled its meticulously crafted budget proposal for the impending fiscal year, sparking discussions and evaluations that promise to continue for the ensuing months.
Fort Worth’s proposed budget puts focus on public safety, 106 new positions within the Fort Worth PD
Emanating from the proposed budget is a multifaceted commitment to public safety, encapsulated in the augmentation of both fire and police departments. It includes a proposal for 106 new positions within the Fort Worth Police Department, a robust figure manifesting the city’s rapid growth.
Fort Worth’s proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year is $2.6 billion
“The total operating budget for the City of Fort Worth is $2.6 billion,” said City Manager David Cooke. “It includes more patrol officers, more 911 call takers,” he added. “I think there are 13 additional officers for crisis intervention.”
However, this proposal, while ambitious, has not been met without critique. Councilmember Charles Lauersdorf voiced discontent over the specific allocation, especially concerning patrol officers.
“A couple of things that really stick out to me, that I hope I’ll get more information, is the 21 patrol officers,” said councilmember Charles Lauersdorf. “I think with the growth of, you mentioned 20,000 people per year, I like where it says more police, but I don’t think ‘more’ quite means enough in this particular case.”
The new budget proposes the largest tax cut
A secondary, but nonetheless noteworthy, element of the 2024 budget proposal was the introduction of a 4-cent property tax rate reduction. According to Cooke, this concession stands as the most substantial property tax rate curtailment both in real terms and percentage-wise within a striking span of at least the past 34 years.
Fort Worth Fire Department will also benefit from the proposed budget
The fiscal dialogue is also marked by the recommendation of the addition of 76 new positions to the Fort Worth Fire Department, further demonstrating the city’s steadfast commitment to maintaining a harmonious balance between growth and safety.
Commencing a series of deliberations, the fiscal year 2024 budget talks are now actively underway and are projected to stretch over several intense months. Lauersdorf offered a cautiously optimistic perspective.
“I think we are definitely moving the right direction with this budget. I think it looks good from what I’m seeing so far,” said Lauersdorf.
Aiming to engage the community and diverse stakeholders in this pivotal process, the first public budget meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 16 at City Hall, to be followed by an array of meetings in various communities throughout the months of August and September.
This comprehensive budget proposal not only delineates the financial roadmap for the next fiscal year but also serves as a reflection of Fort Worth’s dynamic transformation, ambitions, and underlying tensions. The months ahead will likely be filled with critical examinations and debates, ultimately shaping the city’s direction in congruence with its evolving needs and aspirations.
Fort Worth’s budget is similar to the Dallas’ proposed budget
Fort Worth’s proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year is very similar to the budget proposed by the City of Dallas. Similarly, the City of Dallas also puts focus on tax cut and public safety with allocating funds for Dallas Police Department and Dallas Fire Rescue department.