Activist organization in Jacksonville to release The People’s Budget on Tuesday

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — On Tuesday, July 20th, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry will present the 2021-2022 budget to City Council.

Ahead of that, local activist group Jacksonville Community Action Committee their own version of the budget.

Action News Jax Courtney Cole talks to the Jacksonville Community Action Committee to learn why they believe The People’s Budget could better address local needs.

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The Jacksonville Community Action Committee has plans to release The People’s Budget, outside of City Hall in Downtown Jacksonville, Tuesday, July 13th at 11:00 a.m.

“The People’s Budget is a budget that serves the needs of the community,” said Maria Garcia. Garcia Is an organizer with The Jacksonville Community Action Committee.

The local activist group believes the best way to tackle social issues is by prioritizing historically neglected issues with direct investment.

“What truly makes it a people’s budget is that the funding that goes to the services that people need--actually comes from either the bloated police budget, or taxing rich developers--not from taking other money from departments or other community programs at the city still needs,” Garcia explained.

Last month, The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office made a $513.8M dollar budget proposal for the next fiscal year. That’s up $29.2M from the amount approved by city council for this current fiscal year.

Some of the things The People’s Budget requests includes:

  • A decrease in money allocated for JSO
  • $50.5M increase to parks + recreation services
  • At least $15.5M towards creating new homeless shelters
  • $15M for quality mental health services

Action News Jax Courtney Cole reached out to the City of Jacksonville to learn if they believe any of these requests could be achieved.

Nikki Kimbleton, the Director of Public Affairs, told Cole she is working on getting an answer.

“We are planning on presenting that budget this week,” said Garcia.

Mayor Lenny Curry is set to present the budget to city council on Tuesday, July 20th.

From there, the Finance Committee will meet with the Council auditor to discuss and propose any changes. Neighbors will be allowed to attend these meetings as well.

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The final budget has to be approved by the full council, before October 1st, when the city’s new fiscal year begins.

To learn more about the budget process, click here.

The Jacksonville Community Action Committee created a survey to learn how you think the money should be spent in Jacksonville.

You can take that survey here

For more information from the City of Jacksonville, click here.