On Thursday, Sept. 28, the Pierce County Council received an overview of the Executive’s Proposed 2024-25 Budget from Finance Director Gary Robinson. The budget includes 82 different funds, with the General Fund being the largest, accounting for 31% of total County spending. Much of the presentation focused on revenues and expenditures, including a discussion about why the County maintains a reserve to cover 50 days of county operations. Of note, the Executive’s Proposed 2024-25 Budget increases spending by $38.5 million from the 2022-23 Budget. You can view the entire presentation here.
There were four primary economic assumptions that guided the development of the Executive’s Proposed 2024-25 Budget. They are:
- Rising interest rates will result in a period of slower economic growth in 2024, particularly in the building and construction sectors.
- Reduced construction activity, a major driver of sales tax revenue in Pierce County, will result in lower levels of sales tax collections, recording fees, and other revenues sensitive to the real estate market.
- Higher short-term interest rates on County investments will result in increased interest earnings revenue.
- Moderate economic growth is expected to return in late 2024 and 2025, but at lower levels than the significant growth seen during 2020 through 2022.
Robinson’s presentation also included an overview of the various budget ordinances and resolutions necessary to implement the budget. In addition, Assistant Finance Director Julie Demuth presented information on the formulation and distribution strategy of a budget survey, along with the responses that were received. You can view that survey presentation and conversation here.
The Council will hold six more meetings of the Committee of the Whole through Wednesday, Oct. 25, where they will hear from County Departments and separately Elected Officials on the Executive’s Proposed 2024-25 Budget. The meetings will provide time for Departments and Elected Officials to explain their proposed budgets, how they align with community and Council priorities, and respond to Councilmember questions. The Council’s budget deliberations will largely take place during budget retreats, with the first scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 26, at 9:30 a.m. The Council will continue to use the budget priorities established in Resolution No. R2023-106 to guide its decision-making process.
For the full budget development schedule, please visit the Council’s 2024-2025 Budget Development website.