Local Budgets Approved: with somewhat different approaches

Orange County BudgetThe cities of Anaheim and Irvine approved their budgets for next fiscal year on Tuesday. Each city took similar approached to address projected shortfalls in revenue and public service needs with one Mayor vowing to travel to Sacramento to resist state efforts to raid city revenues.

Two reports from Wednesdays’s Orange County Register…

Irvine OKs $145 million city budget, $97 million Great Park budget


IRVINE – Irvine leaders on Tuesday backed a $145 million city budget promising no significant cuts or layoffs, but some worry that not enough is being done to tighten the community’s financial belt.

A divided city council approved the 2009-10 fiscal year budget, agreeing to dip into $13 million in reserve funds to avoid the painful cuts that budget deficits have forced on county and state leaders.

The budget marks the first of a three year “bridge plan” crafted by city staff to avoid service cuts or layoffs during the economic downturn by largely drawing down $30 million in reserve funds forged in flusher times.

Irvine officials are expecting to collect $11 million less in revenue during the coming fiscal year, largely thanks to an $8 million drop in sales tax, from $55 million to $47 million. Property tax revenue is expected to remain flat at about $43 million.

Despite the economic woes, Irvine leaders promised no significant cuts to city services and no layoffs of city employees. Read more Irvine and Great Park Budgets.

Anaheim mayor heads to Sacramento to try to protect local taxes

City approves $1.3 billion budget, adjusting for shortfall without layoffs.

The Orange County Register

ANAHEIM – The City Council approved a $1.3 billion budget Tuesday night, dipping into reserves, increasing service fees and even outsourcing some city services to make up for a projected $20.7 million operating shortfall for the 2009-2010 fiscal year.

At the same time, city leaders celebrated that the budget calls for no layoffs of city employees and retains a high level of city service.

That all comes with a major caveat: The look of the budget could change dramatically depending upon how the state budget shakes out in coming weeks.

To that end, Mayor Curt Pringle is headed to Sacramento today to join with mayors of the 10 largest California cities to lobby against plans to take gas tax money away from cities to make up for major state shortfalls.

In Anaheim’s case, the taking of local gas tax funds could cut an additional $5.6 million from Anaheim’s budget.

“If it occurs, we’re going to be back here and talking about this in a very sober way,” Pringle said. 

Read more on Anaheim City Budget.