Madison Mayor Sue Bauman highlighted the city’s finances, affordable housing and a war on drugs in a 40-minute State of the City address Tuesday.
Bauman warned of tight finances for the city, with a budget of only $180,000 for new initiatives next year.
“Close to 70 percent of the city of Madison budget is funded using property taxes,” Bauman said. “How long can this trend continue?”
She also vowed a new emphasis on neighborhoods and more efforts on affordable housing and race relations.
The mayor promised to create an Office of Neighborhood Support in 2002, which could become a new city agency.
She also wants to cover the city with “neighborhood resource teams” that have previously only been used in high-risk areas.
Bauman mentioned efforts to create affordable housing and get federal financial help for low-income people to live in the city.
She further pledged to gather lenders, developers and citizens to discuss more affordable housing for all who want to live downtown, but cannot afford it.
Bauman is also concerned with Madison’s drug problem and wants to focus panel discussions on the city’s youth.
She plans to invite federal Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson to speak at a group meeting on the problem.
She has not offered any specific policies or programs for any of her ideas, but wants to get city officials and residents to start talking and forming discussions on her propositions.
Bauman also applauded the city for its deep involvement in public service.