Tough budget times, continued
Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant set the stage Tuesday night for the tough budget times ahead for the city, on the eve of an expected layoff announcement. (And if you missed it because the first 90 minutes or so of the meeting apparently weren’t broadcast on TV or online for some reason, here’s a very brief recap.)
Gallant, who appeared before an audience lined with red-shirted city workers, said the city’s expenses in its general fund – its main operational fund – should barely be covered at the end of this fiscal year, thanks in large part to $4.4 million in midyear cuts the city made.
But she said the budget won’t be balanced next year without some serious changes.
Gallant said the city will only have $6.8 million in general fund cash on hand to pay bills at the June 30 close of this fiscal year – far less than the $12 million it would cost the city to cover its bills for 90 days, a generally accepted period, if all its other revenue sources suddenly dried up.
Members of the City Council were told at their previous meeting that the city doesn’t have the cash on hand that seemed to be o the city’s books in part due to an ongoing failure to properly charge city departments back for their workers compensation costs.
The fund balance amount shown on the city’s books also includes $5.6 million due to the city from other agencies, including the $2.2 million loan the city gave to Alameda Municipal Power to help fund completion of a telecommunications construction project and another $2 million loan to the Community Improvement Commission, which is part of the city’s redevelopment agency.
The performance of the city’s other funds was mixed, though none but the fund that holds the city’s worker’s compensation program was in the red. (The Planning & Building Department, for example – which is separate from the city’s general fund – showed expenses that were close to $1 million higher than the revenue it had brought in.)
Anyway, the word is that we’re getting a list of the positions to be cut today, so I’m sure there will be more to come. Stay tuned.