Thank you for your unwavering support and active participation in shaping Oakland’s City Budget for the upcoming 2023-25 fiscal year. And we thank our allies with whom we strategized and worked side-by-side in the Oakland People’s Budget Coalition, the Defund OPD Coalition, and the Bay Area Political Equality Collaborative. Despite facing the worst deficit in Oakland’s history of $360 million, we made significant strides in prioritizing funding for programs and services that address the needs of our most impacted communities.

Your presence online, at town halls, and at city council hearings sent a powerful message to our elected officials – that Oakland must support a People’s budget that focuses on housing and tenant services, homelessness, public services, and community safety programs. Your voices were heard!

Community Discussions at Budget Teach In

We are pleased to announce that the Oakland City Council adopted a balanced budget for the next fiscal year. Council President Nikki Fortunato Bas and her Budget Team (Councilmembers Fife, Jenkins, and Kaplan) are to thank for playing a pivotal role in prioritizing and maintaining funding for critical services in the face of this historic deficit. Key highlights of the adopted balanced $4.2 billion budget include:

 • Pushing Democracy Dollars Forward by funding a staff position and $625,000 in resources to Public Ethics Commission to enact Measure W reforms starting in 2023 and launch the Democracy Dollars program in the 2026 election cycle
 • Supporting Community Safety by adding funding for 24/7 crisis response, community ambassadors in business corridors, two civilian police investigators, and dedicating resources to allow MACRO to fill vacant positions more quickly
 • Preventing Violence by investing $2.85 million more in violence prevention programs, including $600,000 focused on sex trafficking
 • Affordable Housing & Homelessness Solutions with $216 million for the creation and acquisition of affordable housing and a Council-created Rapid Response Homeless Housing Acquisition Fund with $8.8 million to more rapidly create housing for unhoused residents
 • Supporting Our Economy by increasing Cultural Affairs grants by $300,000 each year, adding funding for the activation of Frank Ogawa Plaza, providing business support by continuing the Facade Improvement Program and staffing for multilingual business assistance
 • Promoting Safe, Clean, and Healthy Neighborhoods by increasing funding for parks maintenance and facilities improvements, and adding more than $10 million for traffic safety improvements
 • Supporting Families by expanding hours and services at Oakland’s Head Start and Early Head Start program and supporting senior programs
 • Strengthening Fire Safety by designating FEMA SAFER grant funds to reverse a proposed rolling Fire Station brown out, allowing the City to maintain fire and emergency service in all communities

Read the Council President’s Announcement

While we were successful in preventing cuts to many essential programs, we were unable to secure all of the requested funding for several critical departments including the Department of Violence Prevention, Office of Cultural Affairs, and Department of Transportation, among others. We are also disheartened to report that we failed to prevent an increase of $40 million in the budget for the Oakland Police Department. Despite these losses, we made significant progress in securing more funding for violence prevention, affordable housing, and homelessness solutions – none of these which would have been possible without the collective effort of passionate community members like you and our progressive elected officials.

These achievements reflect our determination to address pressing issues and work towards a stronger Oakland. The resilience and commitment demonstrated by our community are truly inspiring. While progress has been made, we recognize that there is still a lot of work ahead. We will continue to fight for the City to fund, maintain, and implement programs, services, and housing that benefits ALL of Oakland. Together, we can create a more equitable and inclusive future.