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Council Approves New Spokane City Budget

City of Spokane

The Spokane City Council approved a $940 million budget for 2018 on Monday night. Among the highlights, the spending plan includes money for 10 new police officers.

The budget reflected a continued strong showing in sales tax revenues.

For Amber Waldref, it was a nice way to finish her time as a council member.

“I’m excited to have a budget where we’re not worrying, like, when I first came on to council, about making multi-million dollar cuts, so we’re in good financial position and thanks to everyone who got us here," Waldref said.

The budget was approved after debate over a series of amendments about keeping or moving clerks in the utilities and solid waste departments. The amendments were raised by Councilwoman Karen Stratton, who said she’s concerned about trends at the upper end of the city pay scale.

“I will support this but I will publicly say that I do not think some of the salaries, if you look at some of the top positions in the city, I don’t think they’re sustainable. They just keep going up and I really believe if you’re going to work in public service and do this kind of work, you don’t do it to get rich,” Stratton said.

The council also approved a new six-year strategic plan that will be used to drive the city’s direction into the next decade.