Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton to present transformative $229 million city budget for 2023

BLOOMINGTON – Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton will present a $229 million combined operating budget to the Bloomington City Council this evening with key investments in the city workforce and services, climate change preparedness and mitigation, housing, and public safety to improve the quality of life for all residents.

The $229 million budget includes funding for the City of Bloomington, Bloomington Transit, Bloomington Housing Authority, and Utilities, and represents a 29% increase over the combined 2022 budget.

Mayor John Hamilton

“Bloomington is an ambitious city that aims high. We are caring, hopeful, and inclusive, and have been and want to continue to be a leader in the midwest,” said Mayor John Hamilton. “This transformative budget brings vision and innovation to our great small city and will help Bloomington maintain its unsurpassed quality of life – for all.” 

The 2023 combined budget is supported by strong increases in the property tax levy and income tax receipts, as well as significant federal investments like the American Rescue Plan Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act), and the Inflation Reduction Act. The recently passed Economic Development Local Income Tax (ED-LIT) will generate a new $16 million annually for the City general fund. The proposed budget includes 17.5 net new city positions and a combined 13.5 net new positions for Housing, Transit, and Utilities. 

Budget Highlights

City Services and Workforce Investments

The proposed investments in essential city services and city workforce embody the notion that we have an ambitious and innovative city government that is an employer of choice, delivering cost-effective modern services, and is key to advancing the quality of life for current and future generations. A few highlights include:

  • 5% cost of living adjustment for all non-union employees
  • $1,000 bonus distributed in four $250 quarterly payments*
  • A new deferred compensation subsidy is available to all employees with a potential 2:1 match of up to $780 per year, or a 3:1 match at lower amounts of savings
  • Health care premium costs are ameliorated by the employee COVID-19 insurance discount, resulting in employees paying as low as $0 depending on the plan they choose. Overall,  most employees will pay less for premiums than current costs
  • The City will pay up to $2,500 in travel and lodging expenses for employees to travel out of state for an abortion
  • A new health clinic to be started by the fourth quarter of 2023 for employees and families
  • Public Safety investments include a new headquarters for police and fire administration and other facilities, continued incentives and higher-negotiated salaries for sworn police, housing incentives for firefighters, and a total of eight new public safety positions    

Climate Change Preparedness and Mitigation

The proposed investments in sustainability and climate mitigation embody the notion that Bloomington is committed to addressing the climate emergency and building a sustainable, resilient, and equitable economy. A few highlights include:

  • $1.6 million for direct investments identified in the Climate Action Plan
  • $3.8 million to Bloomington Transit investments in public transportation. This is in addition to the $7 million recently announced from the federal government for eight new all-electric buses (

Equity and Quality of Life for All

The proposed investments in housing, jobs, public safety, and the new economic equity fund embody the notion that Bloomington is committed to being a safe, just, and inclusive community where everyone belongs and can thrive, including with good jobs, affordable housing, and inspiring arts and public spaces. A few highlights include:

  • An additional $1 million dedicated to housing (rental, ownership, and housing security) 
  • A $1 million economic equity fund to support low-income residents   

The City’s 2023 budget proposal also includes transformations to current services aligning with our commitment to climate mitigation and allowing existing employees to focus on other priorities. These changes include reforms to sanitation, dropping curbside leaf vacuuming while supporting mulching and bag pick-up, potentially transferring street sweeping to Utilities for stormwater management, dropping coins at parking meters, and changing meter protocols.

The Administration has produced a fiscally responsible and balanced budget, based on months of input from council members and the public that significantly contributes to our community’s goals. The fiscal year 2023 budget covers the period January 1-December 31, 2023, and will be considered by the City Council with a final vote expected on October 12, 2022. The full budget proposal is available at

Total Budget Breakdown

City of Bloomington$107mm$129mm
Bloomington Transit$15mm$35mm
Bloomington Housing Authority$11.5mm$16.5mm
City of Bloomington Utilities$44.5mm$48mm

Budget Presentation Schedule

Monday, August 29, 2022, at 6 p.m.

Presentations: Human Resources, City Clerk, Legal/Risk Dept., Information & Technology Services, City Council Office, Office of the Controller, and Office of the Mayor

Tuesday, August 30, 2022, at 6 p.m.

Presentations: Bloomington Transit, Utilities, Fire Department, and Police Department

Wednesday, August 31, 2022, at 6 p.m.

Presentations: Bloomington Housing Authority, Housing & Neighborhood Development, Economic and Sustainable Development, Community and Family Resources, and Parks and Recreation

Thursday, September 1, 2022, at 6 p.m.

Presentations: Planning and Transportation, Engineering, and Public Works (Admin, Animal Control, Facilities, Fleet, Parking, Sanitation, and Street)

This year’s budget presentations will be held on August 29-September 1 in the Council Chambers at City Hall, 401 N. Morton Street. The hearings may also be accessed electronically via Zoom at or by CATS at

Residents are encouraged to watch the presentations and provide feedback to or 812-349-3406. 

*Bonus does not include sworn police officers/dispatch. Information about the new Police Hiring and Retention Incentives is available at