On June 16th, Salt Lake City Council approved the 2020-2021 Budget for the City. The Council-approved $326 million general fund budget concentrates on public safety spending and future practices, continues street repair and other basic essential services, plus support for people and businesses affected by COVID-19. 2020 provided an unusual backdrop for this year’s budget discussions–it was to be expected during the ongoing worldwide pandemic, and the local earthquake in March. However, more recently, the critical national and community conversations on equity and policing have rightly changed the focus and budget considerations. Unprecedented public engagement about racism and policing led to follow-up review by the Council of the police budget, structure, procedures, and broader policy actions. You can learn more about the budget here and specific actions adopted here. On June 25th, Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall, the Salt Lake City Council, and members of the community announced the Commission on Racial Equity in Policing, a new advising body convened to make recommendations to the Mayor and City Council on Salt Lake City’s policy, budget, and culture of policing. On Friday July 10th, join Council Members Chris Wharton, Ana Valdemoros, and Amy Fowler for an “Ask Me Anything” event on the Salt Lake City Police Department budget and racial equity efforts. Email your questions in advance here or submit them in the Facebook Live comments during the event. Watch and participate on Facebook.
During construction season of 2020, Salt Lake City in partnership with Utah Transit Authority (UTA) is making improvements to bus stops across the City, including some along the Frequent Transit Network! The primary purpose of the improvements is to make the bus stops accessible to all riders. Improvements will vary by stop but may include addition of shelters, benches, trash cans, bike racks, and lighting. Visit slc.gov/transit for more details.