Sac City Treasurer to Council: Revenues Falling Short
Sac City Treasurer Russ Fehr
Sacramento’s top administrators are meeting today to decide how to handle the city’s continuing financial woes. The retreat comes one night after the city treasurer told the council it’ll have to make midyear budget cuts.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Just three months ago, the city council used a mix of cuts and cash reserves to balance a $58 million budget deficit. But last night, Treasurer Russ Fehr said the city’s sales and property tax revenues are already falling below expectations.
Fehr: “City’s not going out of business. We’re not ceasing services. But maintaining current levels of city financial activity just won’t be possible in the short-run future the next several years."
Translation: more cuts to already-decimated city services, perhaps even police and fire – and though officials won’t say so publicly, layoffs are a very real possibility.
Councilmember Bonnie Pannell asked Fehr if the city risked going bankrupt, the way Vallejo did a few months back.
Fehr: “No, not at all. … We have cash to pay all the bills. … I just can’t imagine city of Sacramento getting in a situation like that at all.”
Pannell: “But we still are gonna have to tighten our belts for next year.”
Fehr told the council that even after making the mid-year cuts, next year’s deficit will be at least $40-50 million more.