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Mayor Rhodes-Conway Introduces Capital Budget

Earlier this week, Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway unveiled her 2023 Executive Capital Budget and six-year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). The annual document details funding proposals for capital projects and programs, including buildings, infrastructure and other long-term improvements. 

Among the Mayor’s budgeted priorities are increased funds for affordable housing projects ($60 million over six years), bus rapid transit service ($23 million) and electric vehicles ($2.5 million), planning for potential Amtrak rail service ($350,000) and John Nolen Drive reconstruction and revisioning ($21.6 million). Specific to the city’s Economic Development Division are investments in the Small Business and Equitable Recovery Program, Building Improvement Grants, and the Commercial Building Ownership program – programs which the Chamber supports.  

The $368.4 million plan is largely funded through General Obligation Borrowing, along with other intergovernmental funds and proceeds from sources like successful Tax Incremental Financing districts. The amount of the operating budget going to pay down debt service is projected to rise to 17.4 percent of the general fund budget in 2023 and increase to 20 percent by 2029.

Similar to previous years, the budget package also includes a “Horizon List” for projects that have stated support without approved allocated funding within the CIP. The 2023 list includes a new North Side Police District Station, upgrades to the Olbrich Botanical Gardens and the construction of McPike Park. 

This month, the Finance Committee will take into consideration amendments to the Capital Budget. On Oct. 10, the Mayor will introduce the Executive Operating Budget. Hearings on amendments will follow shortly after the announcement, with Council approval in November.