FFE Board Approves 2024 Budget

Published on November 06, 2023

The FFE Board of Directors approved the 2024 operations budget and grants to the City of Kalamazoo at its regular meeting at Mayor's Riverfront Park on Monday, October 30. The budget is the sixth since FFE was founded in 2017 and represents a continuation of funding for Imagine Kalamazoo 2025 in pursuit of the FFE mission "to empower Kalamazoo City residents to live the lives they want for themselves and their families."

The 2024 fiscal year will bring FFE investments in the City of Kalamazoo since its founding in 2017 to $198 million dollars. The 2024 Foundation for Excellence (FFE) budget is $22,145,187 which includes grants of $4,739,921 to the City of Kalamazoo for budget stabilization and $15,347,374 for property tax reduction reimbursement payment, including a $384,694 tax reconciliation for 2023; $670,344 has been requested by the City for aspirational activities and is being recommended for expenditure. Additionally, $693,104 (3.2% of total) is being budget for FFE operations. Operations costs for the FFE are 3% of annual expenses meaning that $0.97 of every FFE dollar goes directly to the City of Kalamazoo for projects and programs positively impacting residents.

"This wouldn't be possible without visionary philanthropy," said FFE Executive Director Steve Brown at his annual budget presentation to the Kalamazoo City Commission on October 16, 2023.

"FFE has moved from being a bold vision to becoming a necessary and cherished local institution in just six years," Brown said in separate comments referring to the 38% lower City property taxes for every taxpayer, as well as the more than 600 units of affordable housing that FFE has helped build or renovate, the more than 500 small and micro businesses that have received grants or ultra-low interest loans, the thousands of K-12 students who have been participated in summer and school year programs, the 12 miles of new sidewalk constructed, 0 tax foreclosures since 2018, or the more than 200,000 free Metro bud rides provided to eligible KPS high school students. The FFE's unique interactive investment map shows that FFE's investments in support of the City's Imagine Kalamazoo Strategic vision are occurring not only in the geographic neighborhoods that residents requested but also in the most crucial areas. "FFE's work begins and ends with the residents of Kalamazoo," Brown added.

As in all previous years the FFE budget approval process has four significant steps once the special request and project scoring processes are complete by the City of Kalamazoo and City Leadership has conveyed grant requests to the FFE:

  1. September - The Board reviews and engages with the draft budget, conveying any observed changes or new needs to staff;
  2. October - Staff present the draft budget to the City Commission for review but not action;
  3. October - The Board votes on the final draft buget(PDF, 158KB) at their October meeting and recommend it to the City Commission for adoption with the City's budget;
  4. January - The City Commission vote to adopt the City's budget including FFE

Please refer to the attached FFE Request Memorandum(PDF, 691KB) from the City of Kalamazoo as well as the Draft FFE 2024 Budget itemization(PDF, 158KB) for complete information.

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