Alameda County Staves Off Program Cuts
Alameda County will use money saved from this year's budget and increase property and sales tax revenue to address a $78.2 million budget deficit, making it possible for the county to avoid cuts to social and health care programs, according to the proposed 2006-2007 county budget, the Oakland Tribune reports.
The $2.16 billion budget includes funding for health insurance and retirement benefits, as well as pay increases for workers in most county departments.
The budget also allocates an additional $1.5 million for mental health care, which will be supplemented with $11 million from Proposition 63 when the county's plan for the funds is approved. State voters approved Proposition 63 in 2004 to fund mental health care.
However, the county will have limited funds for an expansion of services or to finance the seismic retrofit of Alameda County Medical Center, according to the Tribune. The proposed budget also does not account for expected state and federal budget cuts, which could cost the county millions of dollars.
Budget hearings begin June 19, and county Administrator Susan Muranishi said she hopes to have a budget passed by the end of the week (Marcucci, Oakland Tribune, 6/9).
The budget proposal is available online. Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the document.