Seattle warns of dire revenue forecast over next two years as council works on budget

The city of Seattle unveiled its updated revenue forecast Wednesday, predicting that the city will see significantly less-than-anticipated revenues for the 2023-24 budget.

Over the next two years, the city expects to see a net $64 million decrease in real estate excise tax revenues, a net $9.4 million decrease in general fund revenues, and a net $4.5 million decrease in revenues from the sweetened beverage tax.

As a result, the city council has revised the timeline on which it will consider the 2023-24 budget. A balancing package will be released Monday, Nov. 14, which will be voted on by the council on Nov. 21.

The council’s final committee vote is set for Monday, Nov. 28.

“Today’s revenue forecast demonstrates the instability and insufficiency of the existing revenue streams to meet the growing needs of Seattle’s residents and the inequities exacerbated by COVID-19,” councilmember Teresa Mosqueda said in a statement. “We will respond with urgency and compassion to this new revenue forecast by continuing to craft a budget that focuses on core city services, avoids austerity, and invests in a more equitable economy.”

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