Fiscal Year 2020 Budget

Thank you for your interest in the City's budget for the 2020 fiscal year, which begins on July 1, 2019, and ends on June 30, 2020. For general background on the City budget process, please visit

Public Meetings & Input Opportunities

Budget Comments Button
Taxpayer Receipt
Public Input Meeting Agenda

Public Meetings & Input Opportunities

The Dubuque City Council will hold a series of six public meetings in February 2019 to review City department/division budget details and receive public input as part of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 recommended budget review process. The City Council will then hold a final public hearing at which the FY2020 recommended budget will be discussed and adopted. State of Iowa law requires municipalities adopt budgets by March 15, 2019.

All public hearings will be held at the City Council Chambers, located on the second floor of the Historic Federal Building at 350 W. 6th Street. Members of the public are welcome to attend and participate. All public hearings will also be broadcast live on CityChannel Dubuuqe, Dubuque's local government access channel (117.2 and 8 on Mediacom cable system) and available for live-stream on the City's website.

Public input budget meetings will be held on the following dates:

Meeting Date/Time  Presenting Departments/Divisions
Thursday, February 7, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Click on the department title to view the video:
Information Services, Legal Services, City Clerk, Cable TV, City Manager's Office, and City Council 
Monday, February 11, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Health Services, Human Rights, Library, Airport, and Finance 
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m. 
Housing & Community Development, Planning, Economic Development, and Transportation Services
Thursday, February 21, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m. 
Purchase of Services, Five Flags Civic Center, Conference Center, and Parks & Recreation
Monday, February 25, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m. 
Emergency Management, Emergency Communications, Police, Fire, and Building Services 
Wednesday, February 27, 2019 
6:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Water, Water & Resource Recovery Center, Public Works, and Engineering 
Thursday, March 7, 2019
6:00 - 9:00 p.m. 
Final budget hearing and adoption of recommended budget 

A New Way to Participate: Balancing Act Budget Simulation

The Balancing Act Budget Simulator is a new, interactive way to provide input on the City's FY2020 budget. Use your smartphone, tablet, or computer to use this online budget simulation tool. This tool allows users to learn how property tax is budgeted and tax revenues are spent and illustrates how the City of Dubuque's Fiscal Year 2020 budget will be developed. The budget simulator challenges residents and stakeholders to actively balance their own version of the City's budget, subject to the same constraints City Council members face when considering the City's recommended operating and capital budgets. Learn about these complex trade-offs necessary to balance the general fund budget, then try your hand at balancing increases in certain programs and services and cuts in others, adjusting the property tax rate, and submitting anonymous comments on the proposed FY2020 budget.

Taxpayer Receipt

Don't forget to also check out the new Taxpayer Receipt tool to view an estimate of how your tax dollars are spent in Fiscal Year 2019: 

Where do your property taxes go? Click here to watch the short video!

Recommended Budget Presentation

Dubuque City Manager Michael Van Milligen presented the FY2020 Recommended Budget to the City Council at their regular meeting on Monday, Feb. 4.

CLICK HERE to view the Feb. 4 presentation to City Council and subsequent discussion.

CLICK HERE to view the Feb. 4 Recommended Budget presentation slides.

The detailed recommended budget materials are available for download/viewing below and printed copies are available for viewing at the City Clerk’s Office in City Hall, and available for checkout from the Carnegie-Stout Public Library Reference Desk.  

Want to receive updates and announcements related to the City's operating and capital improvement project budget? Sign up at

Fiscal Year 2020 Recommended Budget Documents

City Manager's FY20 Recommended Budget Transmittal Message (Presented at the Monday, Feb. 4, 2019 City Council Meeting)

FY2020 - FY2024 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) Transmittal Message

FY2020 Budget in Brief

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Fiscal Year 2020 Recommended Resident's Guide

This document provides a synopsis of the City's recommended budget and guidelines. It includes a budget message from the City Manager, overview of the recommended budget, revenue and expenditure summaries, debt summaries, and a summary of the capital budget. Click on the links below to view the Recommended Resident's Guide for Fiscal Year 2020.

FY2020 Budget in Brief

FY2020 Recommended Resident's Guide Part 1 - City Manager's Budget Transmittal Message and Budget Overviews (39.2 MB)

FY2020 Recommended Resident's Guide Part 2 - Financial Summaries, Debt Summary, CDBG, Capital Projects (22.4 MB)

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Fiscal Year 2020-2024 Recommended Capital Improvement Program (CIP)

The CIP, as the plan for the City's physical development effort, attempts to address a variety of needs which the City must meet if it is to maintain its physical facilities, meet its service commitments and provide for its future development. The CIP recommendation reflects the City's comprehensive plan and the goals and priorities established by the City Council. The document lists projects by department followed by a CIP message from the City Manager. This document is fully searchable. To perform a search, type Ctrl + F and type a word in the search box. Click on the link below to view the Recommended FY 2020 - FY 2024 Capital Improvement Program (CIP).

FY2020 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) - Recommended (13.2 MB)

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Fiscal year 2020 Recommended Policy Budget

The Policy Budget defines goals and objectives for all City departments and activities, relates them to cost and resource requirements and attempts to establish measures for evaluating accomplishment. Specific improvement packages are developed and included in the Policy Budget for alternative funding and service levels. The Policy Budget document shows the budget by line item for each Department and provides a basis for fiscal control once the budget is adopted. 

The Policy Budget emphasizes objectives, accomplishments, and alternative funding and service levels and is intended to keep the attention of the City Council and public on the major policy decisions involving what services the City government will provide, who will pay for them, and the implications of such decisions. Click on the links below to view the Recommended FY2020 Policy Budget.

Budget and Fiscal Policy Guidelines for FY2020

The budget guidelines are developed and adopted by City Council during the budgeting process in order to provide targets or parameters within which the budget recommendation will be formulated within the context of the City Council Goals and Priorities established in August 2018. The final budget recommendation may not meet all of these targets due to changing conditions and updated information during budget preparation.

The budget and fiscal policy guidelines for FY2020 were presented and adopted by the City Council at their December 17, 2018 meeting. Click the links below for additional information: