Measure A Boosts Public Safety, Infrastructure Spending in 2017 Budget

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City Budget Summit

On Monday, Mayor Robert Garcia and City Manager Patrick H. West presented the City of Long Beach’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2017 Budget. The $2.6 billion budget benefits from $35.6 million in revenue generated by Measure A for public safety and infrastructure. Pursuant to Measure B, approximately $360,000 will be deposited into the Budget Stabilization Fund.

“The proposed budget is fiscally responsible and shows exactly how the City will be maintaining and expanding public safety and making critical investments into infrastructure,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “These investments will help make Long Beach the city we know it can be.”

The discretionary portion of the budget – the General Fund – accounts for only 17 percent ($430.5 million) of the Proposed Budget, but provides much of the resources for critical City services, including Police patrol/investigations, Fire responses, parks, streets and library services. The General Fund primarily relies on general tax revenue, which has increased more than previously forecasted.

“This budget makes a number of investments that will improve the lives of our residents now and into the future,” said Mr. West. “Without Measure A, we would not have been able to preserve and enhance public safety and would not have these additional resources to address our growing infrastructure needs.”

Among the highlights of the proposed budget:

  • Re-establish the Police Department’s South Division
  • Restore Fire Engine 8
  • One Police Recruit Academy
  • Two Fire Recruit Academies
  • New positions for Economic Development for improved service
  • Minimum wage enforcement
  • Two Beach Streets events
  • Clean Team funding
  • Park Tree trimming
  • Water conservation efforts
  • Homeless Services outreach
  • Language Access Plan funding
  • Be SAFE funding
  • Continues Sunday library hours
  • Los Angeles River Study led by Frank Gehry

Due to higher revenues, the previously projected General Fund shortfall for FY 17 of $5.9 million improved by $1.1 million to $4.8 million. While Measure A preserved and enhanced existing public safety services, some reductions were needed to cover the non-public safety portion of a shortfall. Care was taken to maintain City services as much as possible, fund City Council priorities, and make strategic investments.

Long Beach voters in June approved Measure A, a one-cent sales tax increase for six years, declining to one-half cent for the remaining four years, and then terminating after 10 years. Measure A is expected to generate $384 million over its lifetime.

The City Council will begin the process of reviewing the budget at its next meeting, which is scheduled for Tuesday, August 2. Additionally, the Budget Oversight Committee will also meet in August to review the budget and provide recommendations to the full City Council.

For more information about the budget, a community budget book, the Budget Priority Survey, and information about budget hearings and workshops where residents can provide input, visit www.longbeach.gov/finance.

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