Unanimously approved draft budget

AUBURN, Calif. – The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously today to approve a draft, balanced budget of $960.5 million for the next fiscal year – $10.4 million lower than last year’s final budget of $970.9 million. (editor’s note: Placer’s 2017-18 budget was $866.2 million)

“…culmination of a comprehensive
countywide effort…”

Jane Christenson, Assistant County Executive Officer

The budget protects core operations, services and programs, continues to fund capital infrastructure projects prioritized by the Board of Supervisors and maintains reserves to guard against harder economic times.

The county’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30. The proposed budget will serve as the interim spending plan when the new fiscal year begins July 1. The board is scheduled to adopt a final budget with updated revenue and expenditure figures in September.

In a presentation to the board, Assistant County Executive Officer Jane Christenson highlighted several indicators of the healthy economy currently enjoyed in the county, including improved property values that generate growth in property taxes.

“The proposed budget represents the culmination of a comprehensive countywide effort to develop a budget that recognizes future obligations, prepares the county for potential foreseeable federal and state impacts and maintains critical services for our communities,” Christenson said.

The 2019-20 proposed budget:

Furthers the countywide response to achieve affordable housing, including the county’s first-ever housing work plan, a comprehensive plan to address the growing lack of affordable and workforce housing in all Placer communities.

Addresses long-term financial obligations by fully funding annual required contributions for both CalPERS pension liabilities as well as retiree health benefits. As expenses for employee retirement benefits are expected to rise in the future, the county is taking measures to foresee, plan and prepare for retiree healthcare and pension liabilities.

Improves county facilities with a five-year capital improvement plan that continues the county’s legacy of maintaining and improving its building stock to provide service to existing and future residents, and includes funding for new facilities, and rehabilitation and renovation of existing buildings.

Continues support for public safety with an increase of $6.4 million toward the Public Safety Fund. Funding would sustain public safety operations and allow one-time funding for purchases of capital equipment such as ballistic helmets, vehicle radio replacements and helicopter replacement parts for the Placer County Sheriff’s Office.

Maintains and rehabilitates county roadways with an infusion of $7.4 million augmented from California Senate Bill 1 funds, otherwise known as the ‘gas tax.’ Plans include roadway overlays and chip seals, as well as bridge rehabilitation.

Advances environmental sustainability, setting aside approximately $700,000 to finalize the Placer County Conservation Plan, a progressive and proactive strategy for identifying where development should preferably occur while preserving important natural and agricultural resources.

Focuses on development of several key initiatives such as the proposed Sunset Area Plan, Placer Parkway, Placer County Government Center Master Plan update and adopted Tahoe Basin Area Plan. Each of these major planning efforts helps Placer County achieve economic development goals to preserve and increase Placer County’s consistently top-ranked quality of life.

Helps ensure all nine Placer County Libraries, plus a bookmobile, remain open at current service levels with $1.8 million in support from the general fund.

Sustains county fire services with a general fund contribution of $1.1 million.

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