A Look at the Proposed 2024-2025 Budgets in Southwest Connecticut

Note: This is our first piece of budget-related reporting this year. We'll have follow-ups on what residents are asking for and how the budgets will impact local residents in the coming weeks.

A Look at the Proposed 2024-2025 Budgets in Southwest Connecticut
A look at Stamford's proposed 2024-2045 budget. (Courtesy of Stamford)

Across the region, officials are proposing their local budgets for the upcoming fiscal year, which runs from July 1, 2024 to June 30, 2025. Take a look at what’s being proposed in your community and learn how you can get involved in the process.


Mayor Caroline Simmons is proposing a $685.4 million budget for the upcoming year, a 5.52% increase from last year. That budget is split between the city side—about $341.7 million—and the Board of Education—about $333.7 million. 

Simmons said that the budget was “investing in high quality services for Stamford residents” including: 

  • Adding an additional $20 million to the school construction reserve fund, which the city will use to help pay for the facilities upgrades taking place across the city
  • Investing in additional public safety resources, particularly the 911 call center, police, fire and EMS
  • Supporting pedestrian safety, road paving, and sidewalk projects
  • Enhancing the financial reporting systems of the city
  • Increasing funding for parks and sustainability initiatives 

The budget proposes a slight decrease in debt service in an effort to lower the amount the city is paying in interest. 

Still, during Simmons’ initial presentation to the Fiscal Committee of the Board of Representatives and the Board of Finance, members of both boards said that they were concerned about the tax levy being increased by almost 5%.

Simmons said that the goal of the budget was to continue to make Stamford a “more inclusive, equitable, affordable, and innovative City where everyone can thrive.” 

Next Steps

Over the next few weeks, departments will present their budgets to the Fiscal Committee of the Board of Representatives and the Board of Finance

The public hearing on the proposed budget will be on Wednesday, April 3 at 7 p.m. 


The Common Council voted to cap the proposed budget at $440.6 million, which was the recommended amount presented by Mayor Harry Rilling. 

Rilling said that the budget aims to:

  • Continue the “historic investments in our school facilities” while also investing in teachers, counselors, and school officials.
  • Work to make the city the “greenest in Connecticut” through a sustainability and resilience plan and green initiatives like adding more electric and hybrid vehicles to the city’s fleet and expanding its tree canopy
  • Enhance the pedestrian safety and walkability of the city with better connections to transit
  • Improve Norwalk neighborhoods through a Neighborhood Improvement Team that will work on enforcement of blighted properties and zoning violations. 

But Rilling and the council noted that this was a very tough year for the city, with a proposed budget increase of about 4% compared to the year before. 

Next Steps

The Board of Estimate and Taxation has begun reviewing each department’s budget. The board will hold a public hearing on the budget on Wednesday, March 20 at 6:30 p.m. 


First Selectman William Gerber proposed a $370.1 million budget, an increase of 3.7% from last year.

Gerber said that this budget aims to invest in public safety, education, conservation, and libraries through: 

  • Allocating wage increases for teachers and first responders “that have lagged inflation for several years”
  • Investing in the fire department and the Fairfield County Regional Dispatch Center
  • Supporting funding for conservation staffing 
  • Restoring the teen librarian position at the library 

“Given the magnitude of the projects needing funding and effectively operating a Town of our size, my administration is very pleased with our ability to keep the tax increase moderate while still providing exceptional service levels,” Gerber said in a statement. “We are proud to present a budget that prioritizes the safety, education, and well-being of all our residents.” 

Next Steps

The Board of Selectmen finished its review of the budget, which now goes to the Board of Finance. The Board of Finance will continue holding budget sessions, examining each department’s budget requests throughout March, with a potential vote to send it to the Representative Town Meeting on Wednesday, April 3. 

There will be a public hearing on the budget on Saturday, March 30 at 9:30 a.m.


Between First Selectman Fred Camillo and the Board of Education, the town’s recommended operating budget is $447.2 million. It also has a $58 million capital tax levy that funds projects throughout the community. 

The total operating budget increase is 4.68% from last year. 

Camillo said that the proposed budgets are “funding our schools and public safety at the high level our residents expect and deserve.” 

He highlighted investments in: 

  • Infrastructure, including improved drainage, more paved roads, additional sidewalks, and traffic pedestrian safety projects
  • Remediation projects at Western Middle and Greenwich High School
  • Special education, by continuing the implementation of the special education action plan 

Next Steps

The Board of Estimate and Taxation has been reviewing the budget throughout the past month.

There will be a public hearing on the budget on Monday, March 25 at 7 p.m. and the Board of Estimate and Taxation will have a decision on the budget on Wednesday, March 27. 


First Selectman Jon Zagrodzky recommended a $53.6 million town budget, an increase of about $2.6 million from last year, while the Board of Education is recommending a $121.9 million budget, an increase of $7.4 million from the previous year. 

On the school side, the district said that this budget: 

  • Covers the increased costs for health insurance, supplies, and transportation 
  • Provides continued investment in mental health and wellness
  • Increases special education supports
  • Addresses aging infrastructure

On the town side, the budget increases funding for public works, police/fire, and human services. 

Next Steps

The Board of Finance is hosting a public hearing on the budget on Tuesday, March 12 at 7:30 p.m. It will then continue its review of the budget throughout March and April, before sending its recommendations to the Representative Town Meeting in May. 


First Selectwoman Jen Tooker recommended a $246.8 million budget for the upcoming fiscal year, an increase of 5.39% from last year. 

On the town side the proposed budget is $84.3 million, an increase of just under 2%. The proposed school budget is $155.4 million, an increase of 7.4% from the year before, while special funds like health and the library, increased 5.2% to a total of $5.9 million. 

Tooker, along with Board of Education Chair Lee Goldstein, outlined some of the budget highlights to the Board of Finance including: 

  • Enhanced parks initiatives in the town
  • Additional police officers for the school district 
  • Improvement plans in the town, including traffic studies and Parker Harding plans
  • Increased funding to cover special education costs, health care for staff, and transportation expenses

Next Steps

The Board of Finance has been reviewing departments’ budgets. There will be a public hearing on the budget on Tuesday, March 19 at 7:30 p.m., ahead of the final decision by the Board of Finance in April.