HOW THE BUDGET WORKS
Every year, the city passes a budget that distributes money it collects from taxes, fees, and other sources to fund city services. Governments use the fiscal year (July 1st to June 30) instead of the calendar year (January 1 to December 31), which is why budgets for the upcoming year are passed by the end of June. The city budget is roughly divided into restricted and unrestricted funds. Restricted funds have to be used for a specific purpose. Unrestricted funds are what the city raises locally (sales tax, Measure N, hotel tax, property tax, etc.) and can be used for almost any public purpose. The People’s Budget campaigns focus on unrestricted or General Funds, because this is the people’s money and should be distributed according to the community.
Every year, the city passes a budget that distributes money it collects from taxes, fees, and other sources to fund city services.
If Bakersfield City Council chooses to adopt the proposed 2020-21 budget as is, here is where they will be allocating tax payer dollars.
May 5th, 2021: Proposed Budget to City Council
May 10th, 2021: Budget Workshop #1
June 10th, 2021: Budget Workshop #2
June 16th, 2021: Budget Adoption
The Mayor, if needed, can vote to break a tie, or vote in place of a Councilmember during their time of absence. Even though City Council drives the process in this phase, it’s critical she knows what Bakersfield residents demand to see changed in their city .
Your City Councilmember
The City Council acts as a unit and your biggest voice is with your Councilmember. They can pressure their colleagues, including those on the Budget and Finance committee (Andrae Gonzales, Patty Gray, Ken Weir, Bruce Freeman, Eric Arias, Bob Smith) on what kinds of adjustments to propose. Your City Council get’s the FINAL say on what does and does not get approved on the budget!