Erie County Council on Wednesday passed a roughly $570 million budget for the next fiscal year, restoring funding to programs for the elderly and youth workforce development, while still battling a roughly $7 million deficit that's projected to grow next year.
In a 4-3 vote, council approved a budget package containing just over $123 million in General Fund expenditures - a $3 million net decrease from Erie County Executive Brenton Davis' original proposal. The budget contains no tax hike.
GECAC Area Agency on Aging, Summer JAM to receive funds
Council restored funding to the Greater Erie Community Action Committee, including $462,871 to its Area Agency on Aging; $266,240 to its GED Testing Site and Adult Education program; and $263,200 to its Summer Jobs & More program. The amounts reflect what was requested by GECAC.
The budget intends to fill a $7 million deficit with one-time funds, namely $1 million from the fund balance; $2.1 million from gaming revenue funds; and $3.7 million from the American Rescue Plan's revenue replacement.
Voting in favor of the budget were GOP council members Brian Shank, Ellen Schauerman and Charlie Bayle, along with Democrat Jim Winarski.
Council members Mary Rennie, Andre Horton and Terry Scutella voted against it.
Council also voted down a second round of $3.5 million in Rescue Plan funds to the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Commission, with GOP members citing the uncertainty around the commission's recent board shake-up.
Council also approved two ordinances that greenlit $2.5 million in Rescue Plan funds and another $2.5 million in unrestricted gaming revenue funds toward Project Resolve, the multi-phase manufacturing initiative championed by Penn State Behrend.
This is a developing story. Return to GoErie.com for updates.
This article originally appeared on Erie Times-News: Erie County 2023 budget: Council approves $570 million package