Let’s talk about how local governments spend your money. The city of Atlanta officially adopted its proposed budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which started on July 1. The over $700 million general fund is going toward heavily debated and key issues inside the perimeter like policing, pay raises for city employees, and housing.
In April, we kicked off our #ATLBudget project with Canopy Atlanta, Axios Atlanta, the Center for Civic Innovation, and Atlanta Civic Circle to create a people’s guide to understanding and getting involved in the budget process. Long story short: We want to help you understand how your money is spent and what you can do to make your voice heard.
The partnership launched with an explainer from our politics reporter, Chauncey Alcorn, breaking down what the budget is and its implications for Black residents. Atlanta Civic Circle reporter Kendall Glynn (along with data journalist Maggie Lee) looked at the priorities in the budget and how that spending addresses (or doesn’t) key issues in Atlanta. Axios Atlanta reporter Thomas Wheatley placed the lens on the more than $230 million sought by the Atlanta Police Department to combat rising crime and hire new officers. Canopy Atlanta launched a survey polling the community about their budget knowledge and questions.
On Thursday, our partners at the Center for Civic Innovation are inviting the public to “A Look At Atlanta’s 2023 FY Budget,” a recap of what did and didn’t make the cut.
Hosted by the Center for Civic Innovation along with our fellow #ATLbudget media partners, the program includes policymakers and experts breaking down what got included, what didn’t, and ways you can be involved in decisions around our public dollars year-round.
Thursday, July 29, from 6 to 9 p.m.
Atlantucky Brewing, 170 Northside Drive SW, Suite 96, Atlanta
Free to attend. Suggested donations range from $25 to $500, and come with perks. You can grab your tickets here.
Why it matters
The budget creation and adoption process affects everyone, but it’s more important for historically underserved neighborhoods where a disproportionate number of Black residents live. With Atlanta still leading the way in income inequality nationwide, it’s important to know how the city spends your tax dollars.