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Budget Chair Releases ‘Balancing Package’

Councilmember Sally Bagshaw (District 7 – Pioneer Square to Magnolia) and Chair of the Select Budget Committee announced the details of the Council’s ‘balancing package’ and issued the following statement:

“My top priority in this balancing package is to focus on a coordinated and effective system to address the needs of people who are experiencing homelessness – by funding more shelter, targeted outreach, and access to services they need.

“My balancing package invests in solutions we know work, such as Medically Assisted Treatment to address the opioid crisis, homelessness case management in neighborhoods across the city, handwashing stations for our unsheltered neighbors, and an expansion of foodbanks.

“This package includes new investments bringing efficiency and improved outcomes for all of us.  One example includes an Integrated Mobile Health team in our Seattle Fire Department.  In a newly coordinated way, our First Responders will be funded to care for individuals suffering from chronic behavioral health or mental health crises.  This new Low Acuity Crisis Response team will better serve people on our streets, getting them into a place that can meet their needs while freeing our fire trucks and firefighters for the acute crises.

“Additionally, we will offer our police and judges more tools by expanding the Law Enforcement Diversion Program (LEAD) program, and dedicate funds to assess our criminal justice system and ensure our practices are restorative in nature and break the cycle of recidivism.

“I prioritized investments with broad support from my colleagues, including providing support to those who need our help the most: immigrants, refugees, sexual assault survivors, LGBTQ seniors, our unhoused neighbors and more.

“Finally, on the transportation front, my package also targets needed investments and congestion relief on key neighborhood corridors, and improves freight mobility and alternative modes of transportation in key areas such as Downtown.”

The Seattle City Council will vote on the Balancing Package in Committee next Wednesday, Nov. 14 at 9:30 a.m.

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