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Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Boston City Councilor At-Large Michelle Wu to Vote Against Walsh Administration Budget, Urges Additional Time for More Debate

Boston City Councilor At-Large Michelle Wu to Vote Against Walsh Administration Budget, Urges Additional Time for More Debate 

Boston, MAToday, Boston City Councilor At-Large Michelle Wu announced she will be voting NO on the Mayor’s currently proposed City of Boston FY21 budget at tomorrow’s Boston City Council meeting:

“The Mayor’s current budget proposal includes slight changes from the pre-pandemic budget that don’t represent the type of transformative investments that so many community members, activists and residents are reaching out for.

“In the wake of national unrest about police violence and systemic racism, and after unprecedented levels of public outreach and budget advocacy to City Councilors and the Mayor, this proposal makes insufficient progress in creating accountability, appropriately funding public health, and making investments in housing stability, education equity, and economic access, particularly for communities of color. 

“By technically reducing the police overtime line item with no plan for actually reducing police overtime hours, the Administration is setting up the City to overspend and inevitably dip into contingency funding to fulfill obligations governed by existing police contracts. Our budget should represent meaningful change, not empty symbolism and budgetary sleight of hand.

“I am also deeply concerned about the plans and funding for Boston Public Schools as the district moves toward reopening during an ongoing pandemic and as students are facing major learning loss and deepening disparities through the remote learning period.

“Finally, I want to push back against false assertions that Councilors face a choice between passing an inadequate budget tomorrow or triggering mass layoffs and cuts to City services. If the current budget proposal is voted down on Wednesday, the City would move to a provisional 1/12 budget only until a new budget is passed—just as the state legislature is doing right now to allow for full information and debate.

“Boston residents deserve a budget that reflects their values and needs, and they deserve a budget process that values their advocacy. I’ve been inspired by the passion and level of engagement shown by families and organizations all across the city who are making themselves heard in this process, and I’m honored to be a partner in pushing for transformative change rooted in justice for all of our communities.”

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