City Proposes Huge Budget Cuts

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, May 4, 2009

Take the city’s Parks and Recreation department alone.  Hundreds of middle and high school students would lose their after-school programs.  60 youth sports teams would be eliminated citywide.  Grass and weeds would grow taller; trash would go longer without getting picked up.  And swimming pools and community centers would see reduced hours.
Milstein: “Residents are gonna see changes in the programs and services that are available to them.” (0:05)
Finance director Leyne Milstein says the changes will impact nearly every department, as the city balances its $50 million deficit.  The fire department, for example, would see the current four fire fighters per company reduced to three.
Milstein: “We have significantly less resources, we’ll have significantly less staffing, so there will be an impact as we change what we do and how we do it.” 
So far, only the police department will avoid the cuts, since its union members agreed to delay their cost-of-living increases.  City officials say other unions can save some jobs and partially restore proposed service cuts by agreeing to similar concessions.
The city council will have the last word on the budget – at hearings that start later this month.