Three dollar signs

City Budget Process.  
As residents of Madison, it is important to pay attention to the city budget as it gets developed. We are in the midst of the 2024 budget planning season right now. Alder Derek Field (District 3) recently provided an excellent summary of the City budget process. I encourage you to read his summary. I am in agreement with Alder Field about the need to reduce our debt service. As the percentage of our operating budget dedicated to paying down our debt increases, we will likely have to say no to many needed and desired projects in the years to come, including the current budget cycle.

There are two main parts to the city budget. The capital budget (mostly new projects and initiatives) and the operating budget (ongoing expenses, some of which are the result of capital investments). City agencies have submitted their initial requests for the 2024 capital budget, which you can review here. These requests are neither final nor adopted at this point—they are requests being considered by the Mayor.

I welcome and encourage your input on what you see (or don’t see) in the capital budget as it moves forward and its various components are requested and considered. Please email me with your questions and ideas at If you use the phrase “city budget” in your subject line, it will help me compile responses more efficiently. It is also fine to contact me through other means listed on the District 19 home page.

Depending on the volume of responses and questions I receive, you may not hear back from me directly. At various points, I will summarize the input I’ve been receiving and share that aggregated input with you as well as City staff and the Common Council.

Thank you!

Category: Budget