February 28, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Santa Monica’s Two-Year, $1 Billion Budget Approved:

Santa Monica officially has a budget for the next two years. Total price tag: $1,055,100,000.

Council members approved Tuesday night a Biennial Budget allocating $525.7 million in spending for the 2013-14 fiscal year and another $529.4 million the next year.

Despite the high price tag, City officials are cautious of what possibly lurks when the next Biennial Budget comes in front of the council in June 2015: budget cuts and an operating deficit.

Still, the current Biennial Budget maintains many of the City’s services, albeit with each department given a smaller piece of the pie.

In all, City Hall nipped 3.7 percent in spending through June 2014 and another five percent through June 2015 to ensure Santa Monica remains cash flow positive through the end of the Biennial Budget.

The cuts had to be made to account for the loss of redevelopment funding in 2012. However, City officials assured the council and Santa Monica residents that services would not be slashed despite the trimmed budget.

With the council’s approval, the 2013-14 budget officially kicks in July 1 and runs through June 30, 2014.

Budget planning might become dicey one year later, when the 2015-17 Biennial Budget could be in the red, courtesy of pension payments and retirement plans.

During budget deliberations earlier this week and during a study session last month, City staff informed council members Santa Monica may grappling dealing with operational deficits as early as June 2015, when the General Fund is anticipated to be almost $6 million in the red.

Within four years, the deficit may top $18 million.

While a dark cloud appears to be hovering over future Biennial Budgets, council members could only focus on the one they had in front of them Tuesday evening and into Wednesday morning.

A few fees (library, pool, elections) were proposed to drum up additional revenues. City Hall may also be seeking a new revenue stream from the proposed addition of 350 parking meters and potential enactment of preferential parking programs for non-residents and non-guests.

Two fees were approved separately as ordinances. Owners of security alarm devices must now pay City a $27 burglary alarm registration fee. Meanwhile, candidates seeking an elected seat on one of Santa Monica’s four public panels will have to pay a $25 filing fee to have his or her name placed on the ballot.

The highlight of the budget deliberations, however, was a pair of discussions involving funding for the Pico Youth & Family Center (PYFC) and the Cradle to Career initiative.

On the one hand, $225,000 was allocated to a third-party group – Social Environment Entrepreneurs – to operate PYFC. However, PYFC received more than $307,000 in the 2011-12 fiscal year.

Despite cutting more than $80,000 in funding for PYFC, Council member Gleam Davis assured those who remained in Council Chambers at the late hour there was no intent to shut the PYFC down.

With a smaller budget, PYFC’s operation shifts from being a case management center to being a referral service.

City staff expressed concern in a report to Council members that PYFC “did not submit an independent proposal for youth center operations as part of the RFP process,” and those concerns “continue to be documented and many remain.”

Potentially picking up some slack for PYFC in the youth services department is Cradle to Career, a local service provider City staff recommended to “offer mental health services, job readiness and employment placement, education re-engagement, and in-the-field outreach and assertive case management to vulnerable youth aged 16 to 24.”

Another key budgetary item: discretionary funds. According to City staff, $740,611 is currently available in contingency and discretionary funds.

All council members were present for the budget hearing, which lasted until the wee hours of Wednesday morning.

in News
Related Posts

(Video) Pro-Palestine Protest at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Protesters were there to protest the arrival of U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi Counter-protesters drove by in a car. @smmirrornews Pro-Palestine...

(Video) Restaurants Replace Glass Front Doors After Late Night Robbery Spree in Del Ray

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Seven restaurants and small businesses in Del Rey and Venice, including Nick the Greek and Dudley Market, were robbed. Council...

SMMUSD Appoints New Asst. Superintendent of Education Services

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Dr. Williamson Will Assume Her Role on March 8, Bringing 17 Years of Education Experience In a special board meeting...

Hollywood Royalty to Shine at 96th Oscars: First Wave of Star-Studded Presenter Lineup Unveiled

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Incredible Lineup of Actors and Previous Oscar Winners Announced Executive producer and showrunner Raj Kapoor, along with executive producers Molly...

Vote Smart, Vote Early: Streamlining Your 2024 Presidential Primary Experience in L.A. County

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Skip the Lines and Save Time – Your Guide to Early Voting Options  In preparation for the upcoming 2024 Presidential...

Iconic Venice Beach Sculpture and Landmark to be Removed, Returned to Artist’s Property

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Since the Money, Effort or Desire to Purchase the Piece Appears to Not Be There, the Artist Wants It Back...

(Video) Heartfelt candlelight vigils in Westchester and West Hollywood for Nex Benedict

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

The non-binary 16 year old student with Choctaw ancestry died in Owasso, Oklahoma after being beaten by three older high...

Sweet Lady Jane Sparks Hope of Return – Popular Bakery Hints at Reopening Across LA

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

After Abrupt Closures, Beloved Bakery Hints at a Comeback, Leaving Fans Intrigued  Sweet Lady Jane, a Los Angeles cake bakery...

Waymo’s LA Expansion Hits Roadblock: CPUC Temporarily Halts Self-Driving Company’s Plans

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

California Public Utilities Commission suspends Waymo’s service expansion for 120 days. California’s Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has put a temporary...

Real Estate Giant Funds LAPD Union Fund to Sway L.A. City Council Election in March

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

Santa Monica Company Responsible for LA’s Largest Mass Eviction Gives $400,000 Santa Monica-based Real estate investment trust company Douglas Emmett...

Santa Monica College Unveils 2024 Spring Jazz Series Lineup

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

Tickets for each concert are priced at $10 and can be purchased in advance The Santa Monica College Music Department...

Downtown Wellness Center Bridges Gap Between Psychedelics and Meditation

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

The Center Has Partnered With Local Agencies and Gave Free Sessions to Around 500 Veterans in Two Years By Zach...

Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Calls Special Board of Education Meeting

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

SMMUSD Gathers to Address Time-Sensitive Resolutions In a press release sent on Saturday, February 24, The Santa Monica-Malibu School District...

 39th Independent Spirit Awards Celebrates Independent Cinema in Santa Monica

February 25, 2024

February 25, 2024

Santa Monica Pier Hosts Annual Awards Ceremony Amid Pro-Palestinian Protest The 39th Independent Spirit Awards ceremony, another precursor to the...

U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Consider Landlords’ Challenge to Rent-Control Laws

February 25, 2024

February 25, 2024

New York Landlords’ Bid to Challenge Rent-Control Laws Fails The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a significant property rights...