Updates on City of San José Services and/or Operations . (more information)

Mayor's Budget Office

Each year, Mayor Liccardo outlines a proposed budget for the City of San José to help set City priorities, and guide the City's fiscal future.


“The report of the third COVID-19-infected person in Santa Clara County that came out on Friday, February 28, shifted my assumptions about the trajectory of our economic prospects dramatically,” said Mayor Liccardo. “In evaluating our budgetary decision, we should expect heavy headwinds in several key economic sectors--such as air travel--that will have direct impacts on City revenues.”


As such, the Mayor's March Budget Message for Fiscal Year 2020-2021 proposes a three-tiered framework for any spending: 

  • Tier I:   Fiscal Resilience
  • Tier II:  Affordable Housing and Homelessness Solutions Funded by Measure E
  • Tier III: Contingent Expenditures

As we navigate turbulence due to COVID-19, the Mayor’s Budget Message recommends spending decisions mindful of the dramatic changes that our lives and economy may endure in the weeks ahead. 

Tier I:  Fiscal Resilience

This tier allocates $51 million to boost the City’s fiscal resilience, including saving, building reserves, paying down debt, and other mechanisms that reduce stress on the General Fund, and helps prepare for the recovery ahead. Specific allocations are:

  • Funding to pay off two debts--providing ongoing savings of about $4 million annually

  • Boosting reserves to address future year projected budget shortfalls

  • Consideration of funding sources to address our capital replacement and maintenance needs for parks and recreation

Tier II: Affordable Housing and Homelessness Solutions Funded by Measure E

With the March 3rd passage of Measure E, Mayor Liccardo will keep the faith of the voters of San José, focusing the measure’s revenues on homelessness prevention grants and immediate solutions to solve the homeless crisis.

The Tier II investments include:

  • Bridget Housing Communities/”Tiny Homes”/“Cabins”: Continue the momentum through additional site identification and construction
  • Homeless Prevention: Triple the City’s current commitment from $3 million to $9 million
  • Transitional Jobs (“SJ Bridge”): Continue and expand the program to ensure sufficient jobs and work crews routinely clean Guadalupe River Park and St. James Park in addition to their current routes
  • Navigation Center: Inform the Council of efforts to identify a site, with specific options for the City to move this important work forward

Tier III: Contingent Expenditures

All expenditures in this tier are contingently allocated, and ultimately approved in June only (a) if news substantially improves in the weeks ahead, or (b) if there is a non-General Fund source for the expenditure. Tier III includes the following investment proposals:

 Public Safety

  • Allocate funds for 20 sworn officers to the current budget authorization of 1,151 with an emphasis on expanding in such units as Street Crimes, sexual assaults and domestic violence investigations, and the traffic enforcement unit.
  • Identify funds and leverage grant opportunities to provide adequate fire staffing and expand operations at Fire Station 37 and 20.
  • Designate $2 million for traffic calming, traffic mitigation, and safety-enhancing improvement projects in targeted neighborhoods and/or major roads.

Accelerating Affordable Housing Production

  • Create a Development Services Action Team to drive the transformation of the development process and delivery of priority projects.
  • Allocate funds for an Affordable Housing Attorney to enable City staff to increase affordable development activity.
  • Allocate sufficient funds to the ADU program’s need for engineering, building inspection, and permitting services.

Equity, Displacement, and Economic Opportunity

  • Allocate funds to continue our important work on equity and change the title of the Office of Immigrant Affairs to better reflect the expanded scope of its work on racial equity.
  • Continue one-time funding of $250,000 for the Storefront Activation Program to help small businesses transform empty spaces into vibrant businesses, and provide additional ongoing funding for neighborhood business districts grants.
  • Allocate $300,000 in additional one-time funds to SJ Learns for young students in our high-need neighborhoods.

Blight & Neighborhood Quality of Life

  • Improve our blight reduction service delivery through better inter-departmental and inter-agency coordination.
  • Allocate $200,000 in additional one-time funding to the BeautifySJ grant program for neighborhood group volunteer efforts.
  • Provide $55,000 to continue the Cash for Trash program to employ our homeless and reduce blight.

Community Building, Culture, and the Arts

  • Identify sources of funds to further address capital improvement needs of our City-owned cultural facilities.
  • Allocate funds to support the operational or capital needs of Vietnamese American Cultural Center, History San José, Armory, and Children’s Musical Theater San José.

Archived Budget Documents

  • Read the City Managers five-year forecast and revenue projections here.
  • Find the Balancing Act tool in Spanish and Vietnamese
2019-20 Fiscal Year Budget
2017-18 Fiscal Year Budget