County Supervisors Set to Begin Budget Hearings
Sacramento County’s financial moment of truth is at hand. The Board of Supervisors is starting two weeks worth of budget hearings Tuesday. The task is to figure out how to cut $180 million – nearly 30 percent of the county’s discretionary spending.
Monday, June 8, 2009
(Scroll down for budget hearing schedule)
An $80 million cut to the Sheriff’s department would take deputies off the streets. Nearly $17 million in probation reductions could end the department’s supervision of adults. And more than $12 million in cuts to the Department of Human Assistance might leave the homeless without shelter beds – after Sacramento’s high-profile tent city closed this spring. All this and much more in what Supervisor Don Nottoli calls the toughest budget he’s seen in his 15 years on the board.
Nottoli: “If we could find more money for everything, that would be the best of all worlds. That’s not realistic, and so that’s not even practical. We certainly have to look at areas where we had big reductions in obviously public safety, because in other years, we’ve been able to avoid making real deep reductions there.”
Public safety does, in fact, take a disproportionately large hit in the spending proposal. That’s because of a sharp drop in revenues from a specific sales tax measure that funds the sheriff, district attorney and probation departments. But Supervisor Jimmie Yee says when you look at the money the county directly controls, the budget still cuts public safety less than other areas.
Yee: “We put law enforcement, public safety, top priority. They’re getting hit 21 percent, while the other departments get hit 25-to-40 percent.”
Yee and Nottoli both admit county residents will see their quality of life suffer from the cuts. But they say the county will still be a good place to live.
A vote is expected by the end of next week.
Sacramento County Proposed Budget Hearing Schedule
Tuesday, June 9, 2:00 p.m. – Opening of Hearings/Overview
· County Administrative Officer Terry Schutten
· Chief Operations Officer Nav Gill
· County Budget Officer Linda-Foster Hall
Wednesday, June 10, 2:00 p.m. – Public Safety
· District Attorney
Thursday, June 11, 9:30 a.m. – Social Services
· Human Assistance (General Assistance, Mather Community Campus, Homeless Shelters, State budget impacts, Program Operations update)
· Health and Human Services (Senior Adult Services, Adult Protective Services, In-Home Support Services, Child Protective Services contracts, Public Health, Primary Clinics, Administration cuts)
· Behavioral Health (Mental Health Treatment Center/in-patient beds)
· In-Home Supportive Services Public Authority
· Beilenson Hearing (Reduction and/or Elimination of Indigent Medical Care Services)
Friday, June 12, 9:30 a.m. – General Government and Municipal Services
· Cooperative Extension
· Retiree Health Subsidy
· Animal Care and Regulation (Kennel and Field Operations)
· Regional Parks (Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Therapeutic Recreation Services, Leisure Services)
· TOT (American River Parkway Foundation, Sacramento Sports Commission, Museum and Archives, Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission, Sacramento Convention and Visitors Bureau)
Monday, June 15, 9:30 a.m. – Reports back from May budget workshops
Tuesday, June 16, 2:15 p.m. – Beilenson Hearing
(Public Health including the Nurse Family Partnership/Birth and Beyond)
Wednesday, June 17, 9:30 a.m. – Deliberations, if needed
Thursday, June 18, 9:30 a.m. - Deliberations, if needed
Friday, June 19, 9:30 a.m. – Deliberations, half day if needed