New York City is often referred to as the ”city that never sleeps,” and with a population of over 8 million people, it’s no wonder why. Its government agencies are dedicated to serving this population and are responsible for providing essential services such as education, transportation, and public safety to its residents. However, with a city as large and diverse as New York, providing these services comes at a hefty price. In this blog post, we take a closer look at the NYC government’s spending, where the money goes, and which government agencies have the biggest budgets.
The NYC government is one of the largest and most complex municipal governments in the United States. It consists of numerous departments, agencies, and commissions, each responsible for specific areas of governance. From the New York City Police Department (NYPD) to the Department of Education (DOE), government agencies provide a wide range of services to New Yorkers.
The operating budget for NYC Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) was approximately $112.4 billion, a massive amount of money that is allocated to fund a wide range of programs and services. The largest expenditures include education, social services, and pension contributions, which comprise almost 50% of the budget. Other significant expenses include debt service and healthcare.
Find the five NYC government agencies or areas with the largest budgets for FY22:
The Department of Education (DOE) received the largest operating budget of any government agency, with the city allocating a whopping $31.56 billion to it. It’s worth noting that for Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23), this department was allocated a budget of $31.34 billion, only a negligible decrease.
In addition, the government has given the green light to allocate $15.76 billion towards a variety of services. These included probation services with $7.89 billion, maintenance and operations with $5.73 billion, technology services with $932.52 million, executive and support services with $750 million, and indigent defense services with $456.49 million.
The Department of Social Services (DSS) had an operating budget of $11.46 billion. Just like the Department of Education, the Department of Social Services had an approved budget of $11.37 billion for FY23, which was once again only a negligible decrease.
Further, the city has decided to allocate a total of $9.73 billion towards pension contributions, which included city actuarial pensions, non-city pensions, and non-actuarial pensions. When comparing it to the budget for FY23, it’s evident that there has been a slight decrease as the newly approved budget is $9.41 billion.
Finally, the city has allocated $6.30 billion towards debt service, which is $1.80 billion less than the budget for Fiscal Year 2023, where the city had approved $4.50 billion towards the same.
At GLASS, analyzing city budgets is a crucial part of understanding the economic and financial culture of a city and identifying its government agencies' objectives. For instance, by examining the numbers, we discovered that the city has a significant investment in the Department of Education, which indicates a strong commitment towards the growth of its educational system. This is noteworthy as the city has the largest public school system in the country. Thomas P. DiNapoli, New York State Comptroller, said the Department of Education “serves more than one million students in over 1,800 schools (including charter schools) and employs some 150,000 staff.”
Stay tuned with us to continue learning about government spending in cities across the U.S. and to explore the socio-economic purchasing goals of each of these cities.