Philadelphia’s pandemic-driven budget shortfall makes decisions on providing services and meeting the city’s $11.8 billion pension obligation more challenging, the Philadelphia Business Journal reports.
Philadelphia projected close to a $750 million budget gap for fiscal year 2021, and Mayor Jim Kenney’s administration will unveil its next budget in March. Philadelphia has been lobbying federal lawmakers for replacement revenue, but the city can’t assume anything in its budget unless legislation has been enacted, said Rob Dubow, Philadelphia’s director of finance.
Filling a budget gap for fiscal 2022 means that “everything is on the table,” said Marisa Waxman, the city’s budget director. Philadelphia won’t rule out avenues such as tax increases or program cuts. The city is still early in its budget process, Dubow said, but will have to make “painful” decisions in the future.