Crowd Criticizes Budget Cuts to San Francisco Health Department
At a hearing on Tuesday, politicians joined health care workers and organized labor in blasting proposed budget cuts to the San Francisco Public Health Department, "KCBS News" reports (Taylor, "KCBS News," KCBS, 2/19).
San Francisco faces a projected $233 million budget deficit for fiscal year 2008-2009, prompting Mayor Gavin Newsom (D) to ask the heads of all city agencies to propose 8% budget cuts and identify a round of contingency cuts amounting to an additional 5% budget reduction.
Such cuts would total about $45 million for the San Francisco Public Health Department.
The cuts presented by Mitchell Katz, director of the department, included:
- Reducing services for uninsured people with mental illnesses;
- Closing a workers' compensation clinic at San Francisco General Hospital;
- Shuttering a unit at Laguna Honda Hospital, a public residential care facility; and
- Scaling back funding for HIV services.