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Wilmington Councilman Chris Johnson says Purzycki's budget proposal is "fair and balanced"

Wilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki presented his 2024 budget proposal last week.

Finance and Economic Development Committee Chair Chris Johnson says at first glance, the budget seems fair and balanced, and believes it reflects a shared urgency with council to continue stabilizing neighborhoods.

“Investing in real estate and housing, investing in the opportunities to be had in all neighborhoods, not just downtown, I think that’s very good," he says.

He adds he is happy to see investments in community policing and public safety strategies – two of councils biggest priorities.

“It seems pretty positive and actually I think it was pretty optimistic about where we are heading as a city and the growth we’ve been having and experiencing over the last few years," Johnson says. "And that we're becoming a safer city, whereas in many cities crime has risen, crime is actually on the decrease here.”

Johnson also notes the city’s aging water infrastructure was neglected by past administrations, and the water and sewer rate increases that residents see now are part of an effort to fix that.

But the city still has some challenges to overcome, including fewer employers in town since the pandemic prompted many companies to allow remote work options.

Budget hearings begin April 3, and council looks to approve a budget in June.

Rachel Sawicki was born and raised in Camden, Delaware and attended the Caesar Rodney School District. They graduated from the University of Delaware in 2021 with a double degree in Communications and English and as a leader in the Student Television Network, WVUD and The Review.