Cincinnati’s Acting City Manager included a proposed 16% cut in Human Services funding in the draft General Fund budget for FY 2019. This recommendation appears to contradict Ordinance #153-2017, adopted by Council on June 21, 2017. That ordinance required that human services funding be funded at 1% of the General Fund budget, which would be $4,060,000 for fiscal year 2019.

The release of the City Manager’s proposed budget is the first step in the process. The Mayor is expected to release a proposed budget within a few weeks, with the final budget to be approved by City Council on or before June 30.  Council has scheduled several public hearings on the budget:

  • Monday, June 11, 2018 – 6 pm, McKie Recreation Center, 1655 Chase Avenue.
  • Tuesday, June 12, 2018- 6 pm, Madisonville Recreation Center, 5320 Stewart Ave.
  • Wednesday, June 13, 2018 – 6 pm, College Hill Recreation Center, 5545 Belmont Ave.

For years, Cincinnati’s faith community has advocated intensely for a return to the previous city policy of awarding 1.5% of the General Fund budget to human services. Currently, City Human Services grants go to the following priorities: reducing homelessness (16 grants totaling $1.5 million), increasing gainful employment ( 22 grants totaling $1.5 million), and violence prevention (5 grants totaling $425,000).  Even with current funding levels, many excellent and urgently needed programs cannot get funded. Grantee programs include Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN), the Madisonville Education and Assistance Center, the Urban League, Bethany House, the YWCA, Caracole, Women Helping Women, and many more.

Submitted by Ariel Miller