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2019-2020 Biennial Budget Development

Developing the Framework for how the City Plans to Use its Resources 

The City Manager is developing the 2019-2020 Proposed Biennial Budget, which will be the framework for how the City plans to use its resources to achieve the goals the community laid out in Tacoma 2025. The Budget will focus on advancing the strategic priorities identified by City Council, on meeting the pressing needs identified by residents, and on reflecting a continued commitment to fiscal responsibility. 


Creating the 2019-2020 Proposed Biennial Budget is a year-long process that includes many distinct components and incorporates resident feedback in a variety of ways, including listening sessions with the City Manager. View a version of the City Manager presentation from those sessions.


Get Involved and Learn More About the Budget Process


City Manager Listening Sessions

Prior to presenting the 2019-2020 Proposed Biennial Budget, the City Manager is planning a series of listening sessions throughout the community. In partnership with our Neighborhood Councils, the City Manager will share some basic information about the budget and listen to priorities identified by residents. View a current copy of the presentation. The public is invited to attend these family-friendly meetings. Feedback from each of these events will be compiled and shared directly with the City Council as they consider the proposed budget.


 Neighborhood Council Date & Time
North End Neighborhood Council Monday, August 6, 6 PM University of Puget Sound - Trimble Forum (1565 N. Union Ave.)
Central Tacoma Neighborhood Council Thursday, September 6, 7 PM Tacoma Nature Center (1919 S. Tyler)
New Tacoma Neighborhood Council Wednesday, September 12, 5:30 PM  People's Community Center (1602 MLK Jr. Way)
Eastside Neighborhood Advisory Council of Tacoma* Monday, September 17, 6:30 PM Stewart Heights Park Building (402 E. 56th St.) 
South End Neighborhood Council Monday, September 17, 7 PM Firehouse 8 (4911 S. Alaska St.)
South Tacoma Neighborhood Council* Wednesday, September 19, 6:30 PM STAR Center (3873 S. 66th St.)
West End Neighborhood Council Wednesday, September 19, 7 PM Firehouse 16 (7217 6th Ave.)
Northeast Tacoma Neighborhood Council Thursday, September 20, 6 PM Center at Norpoint (4818 Nassau Ave. NE)


*​Attended by Assistant City Manager Tadd Wille


Budget Town Halls

Once the 2019-2020 Biennial Budget is proposed by the City Manager on October 2, 2018, the City will host four budget town halls in different parts of Tacoma before the budget is adopted in November. Residents are encouraged to attend, learn more about the budget, connect with City Staff and community members, and share feedback directly with City Council Members.


Feedback from the Town Halls thus far with be shared with the entire City Council during the Engagement Report Out at the October 30, 2018 City Council meeting.


Location Address Date & Time
Stewart Middle School 5010 Pacific Ave. October 8, 6-8 PM
Center at Norpoint 4818 Nassau Ave. NE October 11, 6-8 PM
Wilson High School 1202 N. Orchard October 22, 6-8 PM
STAR Center* 3873 S. 66th St. October 27, 2-4 PM

*Event will include food, Spanish Language Interpretation, and Childcare. Please call 311 to arrange for interpretation in another language.


Community Survey

Take Our Online Survey 

To share your budget priorities with the City Manager and City Council, please take our short online survey. Results will be shared with Council at the October 30, 2018 City Council meeting.


Take the Survey


Results from the 2018 Community Survey

In order to ensure a more equitable evaluation of community priorities, the 2018 Community Survey was administered to a randomized selection of residents in January 2018. Weighted to represent the diversity of Tacoma, residents identified the following issues as being a top priority for the next two years:

  • Homelessness
  • Overcrowding
  • Infrastructure
  • Affordable Housing
  • Traffic


Important Dates

  • October 2, 2018 - City Manager, Elizabeth Pauli, will present the 2019-2020 Proposed Budget at the 12 PM City Council Study Session in Council Chambers at 747 Market Street (1st Floor).
  • November 6, 2018 - City Council will hold a public hearing on the Budget and Capital Facilities Program at the 5 PM City Council Meeting in Council Chambers at 747 Market Street (1st Floor).
  • November 20, 2018 - City Council is scheduled to adopt the 2019-2020 Budget and Capital Facilities Program at the 5 PM City Council Meeting in Council Chambers at 747 Market Street (1st Floor).

Council Priorities

At the February 23, 2018 Strategic Planning Work Session, City Council identified the following strategic priorities for the City:

  • Homelessness
  • Affordable Housing
  • Economic Development
  • Public Safety
  • Walkability
  • Digital Equity
  • Transit Access
  • Regional Coordination
  • Civic Engagement

Proposed Budget

Throughout the month of October, the City Manager will present the 2019-2020 Proposed Budget and the Capital Facilities Plan at a series of work session during the Study Sessions of Council. After the proposed budget and before adoption, Council Members will hold a series of Town halls throughout the community to discuss the Budget and other community concerns. A series of online engagement opportunities will be presented as well, with feedback provided to council.

Festivals and Street Fairs

Budget Officers attended the following 2018 community events during the summer to gather the priorities and feedback of residents:

  • Ethnic Fest
  • Proctor Arts Festival
  • Salishan National Night Out Resource Fair
  • South Tacoma Car Show
  • McKinley Street Fair
  • Hilltop Street Fair

More than 300 residents assisted us with a budget priority survey and identified Homelessness, Affordable Housing, and Public Safety as their top priorities. 


Feedback from each of these meetings will be compiled and shared at the October 30, 2018 City Council meeting, along with the results of our other engagement efforts, as Council consider the proposed budget.



T-Town City Services Expo

As part of the 2019-2020 budget development process, the City sponsored the T-Town City Services Expo at the Tacoma Dome on March 24, 2018. More than 2,400 people attended and over 600 identified their top priorities for the budget:

  • Affordable Housing
  • Homelessness
  • Public Safety
  • Health
  • Walkability
Budget Engagement Triangles