Alameda County Mulls Options for Health Funds
Alameda County supervisors on Tuesday considered several options for spending a portion of county sales tax revenue from Measure A that is intended for county health services, the Oakland Tribune reports.
Voters in March 2004 approved Measure A, a half-cent sales tax increase that is expected to generate more than $90 million over 15 years.
Seventy-five percent of Measure A funds is allocated to subsidize services at county hospitals and clinics. The remaining 25% of the tax proceeds is available to fund various health services -- such as indigent care, health care for inmates in county jails and juvenile hall clinics -- provided by the county and community organizations.
Health Care Services Agency Director David Kears questioned supervisors on several options for how the remaining 25% share of Measure A funds could be spent for the upcoming budget year. Proposals for the funding include:
- Allocating each supervisor $200,000 annually instead of $100,000 to spend on medical needs in their districts; and
- Setting aside $2 million for capital improvements to buildings or facilities operated by local organizations.
Kears questioned whether funds for various expenditures will come from Measure A reserves, one-time-spending accounts or cost-of-living increases to local organizations. Kears asked supervisors to delay some spending decisions until September, when the county's budget will be more precise (Holzmeister, Oakland Tribune, 5/18). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.