CHARLOTTE – The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners adopted a $1.9 billion operating budget for the 2021 fiscal year on June 3. It represents an increase of $2.4 million, or 0.13%, over the current year.
The budget maintains the current tax rate of 61.69 cents and funds over $250 million in investments for critical services for the public health and social services departments.
The board adopted a motion, presented by Commissioner Vilma Leake, requesting the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education develop and present a meaningful plan of work by December designed to achieve the following benchmarks:
• College and career readiness/academic achievement disparity between white students and students of color to be no greater than 10% by 2024, using test scores from 2018 as a base year.
• The annual numeration of how many students who graduate and move on to meaningful employment or higher education using 2018 as a base year.
Funding highlights include:
Public Health ($89.2 million)
• $104,000 for the Children’s Developmental Services Agency to maintain service levels following a 13% increase in enrollment
• $80,000 for CDSA interpreter services to accommodate the needs of the non-English speaking families.
• $150,000 for advanced tuberculosis testing
• $43,000 for the tuberculosis clinic for supplies and to maintain service levels
• $160,000 for increased costs associated with LabCorp’s annual contract
• $60,000 to increase PrEP funding
• $66,000 for one full-time school health nurse
Department of Social Services ($168.3 million)
• $2 million for job training
• $258,000 to meet the increased funding for foster care placements
• $86,000 to expand Senior Nutrition Meal Services to support increases to both homebound and congregate meal programs
• $206,000 to add 70 wards to private guardianship
• $350,000 to fund the county’s portion of the Raise the Age Funding Grant Match
• $886,000 for Youth and Family Services employee retention strategies
• $250,000 for an efficiency analysis of the Economic Services Division
• $151,000 to fund the first phase of the new Family Justice Center
Asset and Facility Management
• $1.6 million for security staffing at major facilities
• $413,000 for enhanced security at parks
• $881,000 to fund increases in the county’s facility maintenance contracts
• $100,000 to create a sustainability director position
• $1.6 million in additional funding for hardware and software upgrades and enhancements
County Assessor’s Office
• $1.1 million for technology security enhancements for the North Carolina Property Tax System and AssessPro Software
Reducing Racial Disparities ($8.6 million)
• $1 million in funding for grassroot nonprofits
• A total of $3,175,000 to address Food Insecurity in the County including $125,000 to support the initial phase of the Three Sisters Food Market Co-Op, $3 million for the development of additional initiatives to address food deserts and $50,000 in a Community Service Grant to Loaves & Fishes
• $150,000 in a Community Service Grant to Young Black Leadership Alliance
• $50,000 in a Community Service Grant to Prospera North Carolina
• $77,000 for one full-time Project Compliance Coordinator for the Minority, Women, Small Business Enterprises Program
• $2 million to reduce racial disparities in health care
• $2 million for additional park land acquisitions in underserved communities
• $50,000 to provide support to the My Brother’s Keeper program
• $80,000 to interpreting services in the Children’s Development Services Agency program
MECK Pre-K and Early Childhood Education Funding ($42 million)
• $21 million for childcare subsidies
• $21 million for 89 MECK Pre-K classrooms, an increase of 20 classrooms, bringing the total number of children served to 1,602
Mental Health Support (new investment of $6.2 million)
• $1.3 million for additional services in our detention centers. Funding will provide an assistant nursing director, licensed practical nurse, a mental health clinician, a physician, a psychiatrist, a psychiatric registered nurse and a recreational therapist
• $945,000 for Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools Exceptional Children Staffing and Special Education Support to fund 5 teachers, 5 teacher assistants, 4 itinerant pre-K teachers and 2 occupational therapists
• $3.4 million for an additional 15 social workers, 15 counselors, 5 psychiatrists, and 2 behavioral health specialists at Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools
Affordable Housing (new investment of $4.1 million)
• $1 million to fund the second year of Habitat for Humanity’s Critical Home Repair Program. Funding will support 31 home repair projects in FY2021.
• $3 million to expand our rental subsidy programs
• $82,000 for the first year of the Roof Above program with the Men’s Shelter
Park and Greenways (new investment of $5.2 million)
• $4.6 million for 59 part-time and limited part time positions for the new Eastway Regional Recreation Center, two wheelchair accessible buses and computers for the computer lab, and other operating expenses for this new facility.
• $100,000 for two full-time maintenance and operation positions at American Legion Memorial Stadium
• $75,000 for the Youth Conservation Corps summer youth employment program
• $69,000 for summer camps
• $37,000 for programming and related expenses for Steven’s Nature Creek and the McDowell Nature Center
• $9.2 million for a 3% increase for employees
• $682,000 to include a 3% increase for MEDIC employees
• $4 million for required pension contributions
• $1.3 million for increased costs associated with medical and dental insurance
Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office
• $683,000 for staffing costs, program supplies, equipment maintenance and repairs and metal detector rentals during the Republican National Convention
• $218,000 to replace a total of 345 bullet proof vests
• $54,000 to purchase three patrol narcotic detention canines
• $100,000 to provide the supplies needed for Juvenile Programs and Housing.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools ($529.9 million)
• $19.4 million to support Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools operating expenses including:
• Health insurance and retirement rate increases, funding to accommodate charter school and enrollment growth for 1,807 new students, maintenance and operating costs for 1 new school, student support staffing/social and emotional learning support, Exceptional Children staffing and special education support
• $2.8 million for building services preventative maintenance staffing
• $1.3 million in one-time funding for CMS’s Enterprise Resource Planning Systems
• $11 million is held in Restricted Contingency until CMS provides $15 per hour minimum wage for hourly employees.
Central Piedmont Community College ($39 million)
• Salaries for maintenance staff
• Costs of maintenance and repairs of buildings and grounds
• Insurance fees for campus buildings, vehicles and
• Workers compensation for institutional employees paid from local funds and other necessary insurance coverages.
• $350,000 to support a Request for Proposal to develop a libraries Facilities Master Plan
Arts & Science Council
• $500,000 to support a grant program for the Arts and Science Council bringing total funding for the Arts and Science Council to $2.6 million