The Madison City Council Finance Committee unanimously voted Monday to increase funding in support of youth employment contracts and authorized the city government to enter into partnerships with local non-profit organizations who offer employment programming.

The committee voted to allocate $706,580 in support of adult employment contracts and $722,008 toward youth employment contracts.

This decision amended the city’s 2018 adopted operating budget by moving $22,500 previously budgeted toward adult employment programs toward youth employment programs instead.

City Council discusses programs to serve marginalized communities in MadisonA City Council meeting was hosted at Madison Municipal Court Tuesday night to focus on homelessness and civil rights in Read…

Additionally, the amendment authorized the city government to enter into contracts with non-profit organizations who offer programming which connect individuals with employment.

Individuals at the committee meeting spoke about the importance of funding programs which provide employment for youth, and can help divert kids from potentially troubled paths.

Madison resident Frank Davis said the lack of youth employment programs in his adolescence surrounded him with people who didn’t have any interest in his success. As a result, Davis said his life took a very different path than it otherwise might have.

“I was a straight A student at West High School, I had a scholarship to go to Texas A&M,” Davis said. “Because I didn’t have the right people around me, I dropped out.”

One of the non-profit programs which the city will be working with is Mentoring Positives, an organization which works with at-risk children in the Madison area.

Will Green, founder of Mentoring Positives, spoke about his support for smaller, local non-profits in helping Madison children.

“I’m just here to advocate for small agencies — small non-profits — that put it on the line everyday,” Green said.

City Council approves 2018 executive, operating budgetsAfter nearly nine hours of debate, the more than $300 million 2018 executive capital budget and more than $500 million operating Read…

Smaller organizations are more involved and present to the community it serves, Green said and are thus able to serve that community better.

Also at the meeting Monday, the committee unanimously reallocated roughly $2 million to different destinations between and within city agencies.

In the reallocation, $1.72 million of this $2 million was transferred across agency budgets. The City of Madison Dept. of Human Resources, Dept. of Engineering, Mayoral staff and the Madison Police Department all received increased funding.

This transfer of funds was drawn from the city’s direct appropriations budgetary designation, the Dept. of Information Technology, the Economic Development Division, the Dept. of Traffic Engineering and the Dept. of Planning, Community, and Economic Development.

The remaining $195,000 was transferred within agencies. Departments which received an internal reappropriation of funds included the Office of the City Assessor, the Dept. of Human Rights, the Common Council, the Dept. of Finance, the Dept. of Parks and the Dept. of Planning, Community, and Economic Development.

In its third quarter projections, Madison city officials projected a budgetary surplus of $900,000.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the committee collectively voted to authorize free rides on Madison city busses on New Year’s Eve. The move took $10,000 of Metro Transit’s fund balance for this purpose.