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Columbus mayor outlines proposed 2023 General Fund budget

Columbus City Hall
David Holm

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther presented his proposed 2023 General Fund budget on Thursday. At $1.14 billion, it's the largest-ever in the city's history.

"This budget is about equity and opportunity, and it emphasizes our continued focus on our community's highest priorities: safety, affordability and vital city services," Ginther said.

Despite the economic impact of the pandemic, uncertainty over municipal income tax revenues, increasing inflation and increasing interest rates, the mayor said the city is on firm financial footing.

"We've bucked the trends, maintaining city services without eliminating a single position. Our local labor market has recovered to pre-pandemic levels," he said.

Ginther's budget includes more than $2 million for youth programming and $10 million in Human Services Grants to help vulnerable residents.

The budget also includes funding for additional staff to support the city's Housing Strategy, which launched earlier this year.

"[It's] a vital step forward to ensuring that no resident spends more than 30% of their income to live in safe, decent housing and a neighborhood of their choice," Ginther said.

Other spending includes more than $6 million to increase recycling to once a week city wide, and more than $2 million to confront illegal dumping.

The Columbus City Council will now begin budget deliberations, including public hearings, and is expected to approve an amended budget early next year.

The full budget can be viewed here.

Matthew Rand is the Morning Edition host for 89.7 NPR News. Rand served as an interim producer during the pandemic for WOSU’s All Sides daily talk show.