Thursday, April 14, 2016- NEWS RELEASE
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San Diego – Continuing to build a better future for all of San Diego’s neighborhoods, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today introduced the City of San Diego’ s Proposed Fiscal Year 2017 Budget – a balanced budget that marks a doubling of infrastructure funding and near-tripling of streets funding since Faulconer took office.
“We’ve laid the groundwork for building a better San Diego in our first two budgets, and now we’re taking neighborhood improvements to the next level with the most funding for infrastructure this decade,” Mayor Faulconer said. “This balanced budget sets a record for road repair funding, keeps rec centers open longer for our families, invests in employment and education programs, continues fiscal reform and brings neighborhood upgrades to underserved communities.”
Annual funding for street repairs has increased nearly threefold since Mayor Faulconer took office in 2014, reaching a record $109 million in FY2017. The City is on pace to far exceed Faulconer’s goal of repairing 1,000 miles of streets over five years.
The annual budget for the Capital Improvements Program, which funds most infrastructure projects throughout the City, has also seen significant growth since Mayor Faulconer took office. It has more than doubled since Fiscal Year 2014 and now stands at $373 million.
The proposed budget is a fiscally responsible plan that continues Mayor Faulconer’s push to fix San Diego’s streets, expand neighborhood services, create opportunities for residents and invest in neighborhood infrastructure. The proposal includes:
- $109 million in street repair funding
- Most funding for the Capital Improvements Program this decade
- Fulfilling Mayor Faulconer’s pledge to dedicate half of major General Fund revenue growth to neighborhood repairs
- Expanding recreation center hours to the highest level in a decade
- Four academies for police recruits and two for firefighter recruits
- Expansions to popular afterschool and youth jobs programs
- Tripling the amount of major storm channel clearings
- Millions for new and replacement sidewalks and streetlights
- Resources to begin implementing Climate Action Plan
- Funding to move forward on innovative Pure Water recycling program
- Additional lifeguards to ensure beach safety
- Creating a 3-1-1-style system to improve customer service
- Park and playground improvements throughout the city
- Fully funding reserves and making annual pension payment
“With this new budget proposal, we’re making another significant investment in San Diego’s neighborhoods for the third straight year,” Mayor Faulconer said. “This plan makes sure that as our economy grows and we see the savings from fiscal reforms, our communities are the first to benefit.”
The $3.3 billion budget proposal recommends spending levels for City operations for Fiscal Year 2017, which runs from July 1, 2016, through June 30, 2017. The budget plan reflects San Diego’s strong economy, projecting moderate growth in all major General Fund revenue categories, including sales tax, property tax and transit occupancy tax revenue. This sustained growth allows for enhanced services in every community.
The budget document fully funds reserves and makes the City’s annual pension payment in full. To further protect communities from possible service reductions in the future, Mayor Faulconer has recommended to the City Council the creation and funding of a new Pension Payment Reserve to minimize cuts to neighborhood funding when the City incurs unexpected increases in pension payments from market volatility, changes in actuarial assumptions or other factors. A strong reserve policy is key to sustaining the City’s strong credit ratings and service levels, as well as protecting against the effects of potential economic downturns or slowing in the economy.
The final budget will be adopted in June following several weeks of review by the public and the City Council. The budget will be formally presented to the City Council at 2 p.m. Tuesday in the City Council chambers.
Here’s what City Councilmembers are saying about Mayor Faulconer’s proposed budget:
City Council President Sherri Lightner: “I am pleased to once again see that the City has one of the best budgets that we have seen in years, focused on community services, fire and safety, and infrastructure. I am looking forward to working with my council colleagues on finalizing it.”
Councilmember Todd Gloria, Chair of the Council’s Budget Committee: “In my sixth and final year as chair of the City’s Budget Committee, I am committed to ensuring the City’s budget is focused on critical issues for San Diegans like infrastructure, neighborhood services, addressing homelessness, and funding implementation of our Climate Action Plan. I look forward to leading the City Council in reviewing the Mayor’s proposed budget in greater detail during the month of May and urge the public to weigh in with their priorities.”
Councilmember Mark Kersey, Chair of the Council’s Infrastructure Committee: “I commend the Mayor for his continued commitment to our neighborhoods. By dedicating 71 percent of new revenue to infrastructure this year, San Diegans will see real and tangible improvements to their neighborhood streets, sidewalks, parks and libraries.”
Councilmember Myrtle Cole, Chair of the Council’s Economic Development & Intergovernmental Relations Committee: “Every community deserves to have the basic necessities to help residents not just merely survive but to thrive. The proposed budget provides investment into our historically underserved communities helping to address community-oriented policing needs, the need for greater educational opportunities, and increased public safety. I look forward to the public input and the budget deliberations ahead that will ensure that we approve a budget that responds to the needs of all of our communities.”