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Santa Barbara Council Hears Plan to Balance City Budget for Fiscal Year 2010

Measures include using reserves and solid-waste franchise fees but avoid the proposed closure of Fire Station No. 3

The city of Santa Barbara Finance Department has conjured up measures to close the fiscal year’s budget gap without closing Fire Station No. 3, a proposal issued earlier this year with every city department facing massive cuts.

Santa Barbara faced $10.8 million in cuts last June, an additional $2.9 million last year and now faces $3.7 million in cuts to balance the books for the 2010 fiscal year.

Finance director Bob Samario on Tuesday presented to the City Council measures to close the gap, including using self-insurance reserves and solid-waste franchise fees. It would leave a shortfall of about $211,000, which Samario said is close enough to consider it balanced given that all of the amounts are estimates.

However, the City Council also approved looking into using Redevelopment Agency funds for a downtown parking capital project.

The city faces millions of dollars in cuts for the upcoming fiscal year, and the main focus is on concessions from labor unions.

Check back with Noozhawk for more on this story.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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