Mayor Brand calls $1.1b budget 'roadmap to a better Fresno'

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Mayor Lee Brand is calling the $1.1 billion 2019 budget a roadmap to a better Fresno.

"We are in the best fiscal health this city has been in in a very, very long time, so we've been slowly growing the budget over the last few years. We're in maintenance mode right now," says Fresno City Manager Wilma Quan-Schecter.

It's a 2.1% increase from last year's budget, and the city manager says public safety remains the mayor's top priority, so they're getting ready to replace old equipment and fix aging infrastructure.

The Fresno Police Department is not getting more officers, but one main focus to Fresno's safer future is replacing 120 of their cars, plus, a seven-week drill school for the fire department which will help with staffing and safer compliance. The Fresno Fire Department will also receive funds to relocate and rebuild Fire Station 10 near the Fresno airport.

"My vision for Fresno is to transform our economy by creating citywide prosperity that will improve the quality of life for everyone in the city of Fresno, says Mayor Lee Brand.

City streets and sidewalks could also soon be smoother. Some of the funds will go to adding concrete crews to each district to repair sidewalks, curbs, and gutters. The budget will also fund repaving 85 lane miles.

Requests through the FresGo app have not gone unanswered. The city says they've received such a high number of requests on the app relating to littering and illegal dumping, that funding will also go to a litter control crew to help make the city cleaner.

Mayor Lee Brand will be presenting this budget to the Fresno City Council Thursday, and the city must pass a new budget by June 30th.

City officials say if they can stay on the course they're on right now, Fresno will be virtually debt free in 20 years.
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