Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker signs $6.37B ‘One Philly’ budget

Parker and City Council celebrated investments in public safety, cleanup initiatives and education.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker signed several pieces of budget legislation on Friday.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker signed several pieces of budget legislation on Friday. PHL Council Flickr

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker and members of City Council were in a celebratory mood Friday as Parker signed into law her first budget as the city’s chief executive – a $6.37 billion plan that includes investments in public safety, cleanup initiatives and education. 

Parker signed both the city’s operating and capital budgets during a bill signing ceremony, and also enacted several other bills as part of the negotiated budget package, including an increase in the city’s homestead property tax exemption and a property tax freeze for low-income homeowners. 

“This ‘One Philly’ budget literally invests over $2 billion over the next five years in new investments right here in our City of Philadelphia,” Parker said. You all know the goal. Philadelphia, you heard me say it many times, the goal is to make our city the safest, cleanest, greenest big city in the nation – with access to economic opportunity for all.”

She also acknowledged the historic nature of the day: “I'm super excited, Philadelphia, that this is the first budget I will sign as your first woman mayor in 341 years,” Parker said. 

Parker said she was proud to increase the city’s homestead exemption from $80,000 to $100,000, and said the low-income tax freeze would protect those who need relief the most. Parker called the freeze “another important step forward to protect our most vulnerable homeowners from the impact of increasing assessments.”

The inclusion of the tax freeze was also celebrated by Councilmember Jamie Gauthier. “It was really important to make sure that we got protections in place for our most vulnerable homeowners, because the city, I think, we have an onus to protect people from displacement and not be a part of displacement,” she said.

The budget also includes roughly $636 million for public safety initiatives, including the hiring of 400 police officers. It will also fund new training for community policing, according to a press release from Parker’s office. 

Following Parker’s remarks, Philadelphia City Council President Kenyatta Johnson praised the work of City Council in 2024, noting that the legislative body has passed more than 500 bills and resolutions this year. “That's all the effort of us to make sure we change the paradigm, working with the executive branch, but also the legislative branch, to make sure we improve the quality of life of all the residents here in the City of Philadelphia,” Johnson said.

While Parker and City Council took time to celebrate their work product on Friday, Parker noted that the budget’s enactment represents the beginning of a new era for the city’s government. 

“This is just the beginning, Philadelphia,” she said. “We are in no way finished. We are just getting started. We hope that you see and you know that we are serious about giving you a government that you can see, touch, and feel in your neighborhoods, and we want to make you believe in government again.”