King County's 2023-24 Biennial Budget
Events are listed with the most recent first.
Council approves biennial budget that makes large investments in public safety, transportation and housing
On November 15, the King County Council approved a $16.2 billion budget to fund King County for the next two years. The 2023-2024 biennial budget includes funding for clean energy, affordable housing, public transit, protecting the environment, improving community safety, behavioral health and more.
“Put simply, this budget delivers for communities and families throughout King County,” said Budget Chair Joe McDermott. “We’ve made critical investments in community safety, equitable recovery from the pandemic, and enhanced the Office of Law Enforcement Oversight as the Sheriff’s Department moves to using body-worn cameras. The budget reflects our values well. The plan is set, now the work begins.”
Highlights of funding in the budget include:
- $220 million to convert Metro to all-electric buses by 2035
- $166 million to fund affordable housing near transit centers, supportive housing operations and coordinated crisis response efforts to homelessness
- More than $50 million to fund environmental improvements and protections, including restoring fish passage habitat, removing nitrogen and chemicals from wastewater, and expanding access to heat pumps and solar panels for homeowners in unincorporate King County
- $55 million for community safety, including efforts to reduce gun violence, new Metro transit security and community engagement staff, body worn cameras for King County Sherriff’s deputies, creating pathways away from jail for our youth and more.
Building on the strong initial proposal put forth by Executive Dow Constantine in September, councilmembers worked to ensure the budget added key funding for pandemic recovery, public safety, and human services. Council changes added roughly $76 million to the original proposal of $16.14 billion. Some of council’s added provisions include:
- $35 million Equitable Recovery Initiative, including funding for supportive housing, homelessness support and behavioral health and economic recovery.
- $6.2 million to safeguard against inflation increases for human services providers, including those providing homelessness, housing and gender-based violence services.
- $3.6 million for Metro to serve riders now, improve rider experience, clean transit centers, enhance community safety and expand neighborhood engagement.
- $1.1 million to increase the Office of Law Enforcement Oversight staffing by 55% to ensure robust accountability investigations and community engagement
- $950k funding for youth programs in detention centers: provide behavioral health, skill-building and safety-enhancing services and staffing for juveniles in detention, including a gang intervention specialist, community-led programming, group and individual therapy sessions, staff trainings and other behavioral health services.
- $1.8 million in MIDD programs including sexual assault and domestic violence services, art mental health therapy, Naloxone distribution, and RADAR.
- $24.7 million in new capital investments, including the Little Saigon Community Center, United Indians of All Tribes Foundation Canoe House, Muslim American Youth Foundation Community Center, Children’s Home Society of Washington Resource Center, Fall City Community Center, Hanwoori Garden in Federal Way, and more.
Budget striking amendment presented to Budget Committee
On November 7, the County Council’s Budget and Fiscal Management Committee—which is all nine members of the Council during the review and deliberations on the County's 2023-2024 biennial budget—received the Budget Leadership Team’s (BLT) Budget striking amendment. The striking amendment, created by Budget Chair Joe McDermott and Councilmembers Rod Dembowski, Dave Upthegrove, and Girmay Zahilay, is the BLT’s recommended changes to the Executive Proposed Budget.
The Budget and Fiscal Management Committee will review this document, and if approved by the committee, the striker will be transmitted to the full County Council for a final vote, which is scheduled to occur on Tuesday, November 15.
Attachment A: Capital Improvement Program
Final committee meetings before budget adoption
Two meetings of the Council's Budget and Fiscal Management Committee in November provide opportunity for public comment on the proposed county budget. The meetings will be held on Novemer 8 and 10, beginning at 9:30 am. To join these meetings remotely via Zoom, please visit the link below and refer to the section titled "Connecting to the webinar": https://kingcounty.gov/council/committees/budget.aspx
Third budget public hearing to be held in downtown Seattle
The final budget public hearing to be held in downtown Seattle. Please visit our public input page for more information.
Events are listed with the most recent first.
Second of the Council's public hearings to be held in Kent
The second public meeting to seek input on the county's biennial budget will be held in Kent. Please visit our public input page for more information.
First of the Council's public hearings to be held on the Eastside
The first of the King County Council's public meetings to seek input on the county's biennial budget will be held in Redmond. Visit our public input page for more information.
Council's budget review schedule and public hearing meetings
The King County Council on September 27 kicked off the process of reviewing and approving the County’s 2023-2024 biennial budget. The last biennial budget approved by the Council in 2020 totaled $12.59 billion and included key investments across the region in transit, housing, racial justice, public health, and more.
Councilmember Joe McDermott will lead the budget review as Chair of the Council’s Budget and Fiscal Management Committee. Budget deliberations will include committee meetings, panel presentations focused on different aspects of the budget, and opportunities for public comment and participation. An outline of the schedule is below.
Updated advisories will be sent weekly on Fridays, and additional information and budget documents will be posted on this page.
Public hearing meetings
- September 28 (Wed) – Budget and Fiscal Management Committee (BFM): 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. (est.). Public Comment period will be conducted after elected officials present their proposed budgets to Council.
- October 5 (Wed) – BFM 6 p.m. – 7 p.m., Redmond Community Center at Marymoor Village, 6505 176th Avenue NE, Redmond, WA 98052
- October 12 (Wed) – BFM: 6 p.m. – 7 p.m., Kent Senior Center, Social Hall, 600 E Smith Street, Kent, WA 98032
October 19 (Wed) – BFM 6 p.m. – 7 p.m., King County Courthouse, 10th Floor Council Chambers, 516 3rd Ave., Seattle WA 98104
This is a hybrid (in-person and remote) meeting.
CONNECTING TO THE WEBINAR: Webinar ID: 827 8941 9181
If you do not have access to the ZOOM application, you can connect to the meeting by calling 1-253-215-8782 and using the webinar ID above. Connecting in this manner, however, may impact your ability to be unmuted to speak.
- October 25 (Tues), October 26 (Wed), November 8 (Tues), and November 10 (Thurs) – BFM 9:30 a.m. – noon (est.), King County Courthouse, 10th Floor Council Chambers, 516 3rd Ave., Seattle WA 98104
These are hybrid meetings (in-person and remote) with opportunity for public comment. To join the meeting, please visit this page and refer to the section titled "Connecting to the webinar": https://kingcounty.gov/council/committees/budget.aspx
- Week 1: King County Executive Dow Constantine presented his budget proposal to Council at 10 a.m. Tuesday. On Wednesday, the other King County elected officials will present their proposed budgets to Council, including: John Arthur Wilson, King County Assessor; Julie Wise, King County Elections Director; Dan Satterberg, King County Prosecuting Attorney; Patrick Oishi, Presiding Judge, King County Superior Court; Matthew York, Presiding Judge, King County District Court; and Anita Khandelwal, Director, Department of Public Defense. Opportunity for public comment. 9:30 a.m. – noon (est) Wednesday, Sept. 28
- Week 2 (Oct. 3-7): Initial panel briefings before the Budget & Fiscal Management (BFM) Committee – 9:30 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and one evening meeting for public comment (see details above).
- Week 3 (Oct. 10-14): Budget panel briefings at BFM, 9:30 a.m. – noon Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and one evening meeting for public comment
- Week 4 (Oct. 17-21): Budget & Fiscal Management Committee final briefings on items that require continued deliberation. Meetings 9:30 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (if needed); and one evening meeting for public comment (see details below).
- Week 5 (Oct. 24-28): BFM briefings on related ordinances to support proposed budget – 9:30 a.m. to noon on Tuesday and Wednesday.
- Week 6 (Oct. 31-Nov. 4): No dedicated budget meetings this week.
- Week 7 (Nov. 7-11): BFM meeting on Tuesday (9:30 a.m., Nov. 8) to take action on related ordinances to support the budget. BFM meeting on Thursday (9:30 a.m., Nov. 10) to take action on the biennial budget ordinance.
- Week 8 (Nov. 14-18): A backup BFM meeting is designated for Nov. 14 in case an additional meeting is necessary. Special council meeting at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15 to take final action on the 2023-24 biennial budget. A backup special council meeting is designated for Nov. 22 in case an additional meeting is necessary.
King County Executive Dow Constantine's budget address
The King County Council on Tuesday, September 27, received the Executive’s budget proposal, which officially kicked off the roughly two-month process of reviewing and amending the proposal before voting on a final two-year budget in November. The proposed budget, set to fund King County in 2023 and 2024, totals $15.8 billion. Several key aspects of the Executive’s proposal include:
- More than $265 million to put Metro on target for zero-emission transit by 2035. The budget accelerates our work of convert Metro’s bus fleet to zero-emissions with $180 million to purchase battery-electric buses and $43 million in zero-emissions infrastructure to ensure that Metro’s 1,400 coach bus fleet is zero emissions by 2035.
- Restoring fish habitat: $28.5 million in capital investments to remove blockages to fish passage habitat. King County will restore access to 50 percent of fish passage habitat by 2032.
- Building affordable housing near transit: $45 million in bonds backed by lodging tax revenues will be issued in 2023 to fund affordable housing near transit stations.
- Supporting housing operations: Up to $30 million to fund operations, maintenance, and services for existing and new supportive housing sites.
- Preventing gun violence: $9 million to support 52 Regional Peacekeepers Collective, trusted messengers delivering a community-led approach to gun violence prevention including critical incident response, hospital-based referrals, and hot spot remediation activities.
- Ensuring safety for transit riders and staff: $21 million to support 140 Metro transit security officers providing support and visibility on Metro buses, transit centers, and stops. An additional $5.1 million will support Metro SaFE Reform Initiatives, including a new partnership with the Department of Community and Human Services and community-based organizations to connect people in crisis on and near Metro transit with resources and services.
- Supporting community-led diversion programs: $11.9 million to continue the Restorative Community Pathways program and the Community Diversion Program to provide community-based accountability and services for youth and adults outside the court system.
- A proposal for a new levy to fund behavioral health and pending passage by the King County Council will be presented to voters for their approval this spring.
The King County Council's biennial budget review begins
When King County Executive Dow Constantine presents his proprosal for the county's next biennial budget (2023 and 2024) to the King County Council on Tuesday, September 27, it begins a one-and-a-half-month process of review by the Council that culminates in the passage of a balanced budget in mid-to-late November. This review of the two-year county budget is one of the most important functions of the King County Council, and the county is required by law to adopt a balanced budget. The Council invites the input of the public on this process and will hold three public hearings during October in different parts of King County to enable the public to participate in the budget review. The public may submit comments during these meetings in person or online. As more information becomes available on the meetings and the proposed budget, it will be posted on this website.