San Francisco Board of Supervisors Budget Committee Restores $17 Million in Services Cut in Newsom’s Proposal
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors budget committee on Saturday voted 2-1 to approve a revised budget that restores $17 million in programs and services -- most of them part of the city Department of Public Health -- that were cut in Mayor Gavin Newsom's (D) budget proposal (Kim, San Francisco Chronicle, 7/5). In his $5 billion budget plan, Newsom proposed reducing public health staff at primary care clinics, closing the dialysis unit at San Francisco General Hospital and reducing support services for people with HIV. He also proposed eliminating some jobs and consolidating departments (California Healthline, 6/18). The revised budget would restore many of the services by making $11 million in funding cuts and savings elsewhere in the budget and by reallocating an additional $4 million in property transfer revenue and $2 million in revised property tax revenue projections.
According to budget committee member and Supervisor Jake McGoldrick, most of the reallocated funds went to health services, about which many city residents had expressed concern. "Big winners" include $1.7 million for DPH's Ryan White AIDS Care Service; $1.75 million for primary care clinics; and $1.5 million for jail health services, the Chronicle reports. The committee also allocated $2.3 million to restore the dialysis center at S.F. General (San Francisco Chronicle, 7/5). As of Friday, the committee also had voted to allocate funds to restore full staffing of interpretation services at S.F. General and to prevent the consolidation of three mental health clinics (Gordon, San Francisco Chronicle, 7/3). Ben Rosenfield, Newsom's budget director, said that the revised budget would not restore every job or service slated for elimination under Newsom's proposal (San Francisco Chronicle, 7/5).
On Friday, Supervisor Gerardo Sandoval, chair of the budget committee, said, "With these actions, we are working to address" some of the biggest problems in San Francisco, including the need to "protect our most vulnerable residents from deep service cuts." Josie Mooney, executive director of SEIU Local 790, said, "What we have so far are very important restorations that represent real services for poor people" (San Francisco Chronicle, 7/3). McGoldrick said, "The people we want to thank are the couple of thousand people who came through the door and, through their e-mails and phone calls, we knew that the health care issue was a top priority for the community." The revised budget will go to the full Board of Supervisors for consideration July 27 (San Francisco Chronicle, 7/5).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.