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City Council votes to cut $26 million from Mayor's budget

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Posted at 5:57 PM, Jun 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 06:31:57-04

In an unanimous vote Monday night, the Baltimore City Council voted to cut $26 million from the Mayor's budget. Council members are seeking $13.5 million more to help close the gap at city schools and pay for after school programs.

"We want to get a budget passed that reflects our shared values and priorities," says Council Budget Chairman Eric Costello, "This current budget does not."

Over the past several weeks, Council and the Mayor's Office have been negotiating over more money for schools. Costello says those talks have been frustrating.

"It's absolutely critical," he says. "You want to have a discussion about crime prevention? Let's talk about funding our youth."

The $26 million in cuts would affect police administration, trash collection, a new street light program, mechanical street sweeping and several other of Mayor Pugh's legislative priorities. 

"She believes that there remains opportunities for the Council and the administration to collaborate in the best interests of Baltimore's children and families," said a Pugh spokesman.

Council members agree that there is still plenty of time to come to an agreement.

"That's what we're going to continue to push for," says Councilman Brandon Scott, "we just want to make sure we get everyone on the same page."

A third and final vote on the cuts will take place at a later City Council meeting.

The City Council is looking for $13 million to go toward to Baltimore City Schools.