City Adopts Budget, Aims to Improve Fiscal Efficiency

At long last, San Marino has a budget.
After an extra two months of work on the document, several City Council meetings that tested officials’ mental energy and patience, and focused looks at departments and fiscal strategies, it is the first step the city is taking to usher in a new era of financial scrutiny and disciplined planning. Officials were at times not overly enthusiastic about the approved budget, but acknowledged it was part of a process. Continue reading “City Adopts Budget, Aims to Improve Fiscal Efficiency”

Council Near Final Budget, But Hang-Ups Remain

The budget is close to completion, but the city’s administration and City Council aren’t playing horseshoes.
They will be forced to make an 11th-hour vote on the final budget later this month to ensure the city has a formal spending plan by the beginning of September, a deadline that is already past the July 1 start of the fiscal year. The City Council, in its meeting last week, remained hung up on the Parks and Public Works Department, as well as the Recreation Department, but narrowly issued tentative approval for the other municipal departments. Continue reading “Council Near Final Budget, But Hang-Ups Remain”

In a Balancing Act, City Council OKs Budget

Not without some final discussion, the City Council on Tuesday voted 3-1 to adopt the 2018-19 budget and financial plan, with $14,650,375 in expected revenue aligning with anticipated expenditures. Councilman Greg Brown voted against it and Councilman Michael Davitt wasn’t in attendance.
In the budget, 29% of general fund expenditures will go to personnel, while the bulk of departmental expenditures will go to capital projects (22%), public safety (21%) and public works (21%). Continue reading “In a Balancing Act, City Council OKs Budget”

City Council Hesitates to Budget for Sound Walls

In the last of three budget meetings, City Council members opted on Thursday, June 28, to hold off funding four sound walls and the long-discussed bikeway and pedestrian project near the YMCA as they worked to balance the city’s budget for the fiscal year that began July 1.
La Cañada Flintridge’s total general fund revenue for the next year is budgeted at $14,650,375, which will match its expenditures, according to Finance Director Rebekka Hosken. Continue reading “City Council Hesitates to Budget for Sound Walls”

Council Spells Out City Budget Plans

During two sessions of budget discussions in the past week, La Cañada Flintridge City Council members agreed to designate reserve funds in support of the proposed Sagebrush territory transfer, prepared for the possible repeal of the state gas tax, and dedicated $353,425 to support 11 community groups.
The City Council is set to finalize the budget for the coming fiscal year when it reconvenes for its third budget hearing at 8:30 a.m. today, June 28.
Councilman Jonathan Curtis suggested the city earmark $100,000 in reserves to back up La Cañada Unified School District in the latest chapter of a decades-long tug of war over the Sagebrush territory. Continue reading “Council Spells Out City Budget Plans”

LCUSD Seeks to Improve Messaging to Community

Jamie Lewsadder, La Cañada Unified School District’s chief technology officer, said she learned recently that a relative’s school in Porterville was locked down when a LCUSD intern told her. He’d seen it on Twitter before Lewsadder or any of her family members learned of the situation, she said.
“So I really experienced that panic first-hand,” she said during Tuesday’s Governing Board meeting, at which she introduced a first draft of board policy revisions to improve LCUSD’s communication plan.
“We need to create a plan that allows us to have fast and reliable communication,” Lewsadder said. “News travels so fast; we have to be prepared for it.” Continue reading “LCUSD Seeks to Improve Messaging to Community”

LCF Wraps Up Budget; Pledges $359,375 to Community

La Cañada Flintridge City Council members agreed on Monday to spend $359,375 to support 11 local community groups and spend $914,700 on capital projects such as street improvements and bridge repairs.
In the third and final of its annual budget hearings, the City Council decided to take $354,550 from reserves, $100,000 from its solid waste funds and increase its conservative revenue expectations by adding $125,000 to the budget for items they deem necessary in the coming fiscal year.
The previous week, council members reviewed the city’s financials to learn that it expects to bring in a total of $13.863 million in 2017-18 and to have $13.118 million in expenses, which left a preliminary balance of $745,550 for council consideration items. Continue reading “LCF Wraps Up Budget; Pledges $359,375 to Community”

LCF Defines Budget; Reserves to Slip in 2017-18

If the 2017-18 budget proposed Tuesday is approved in July, the city will allocate an additional $40,000 toward assigned sheriff’s patrols and see its financial reserves drop below 100% of operating expenses and revenue totals for the first time in years.
In the first of three or four planned budget meetings this year, council members reviewed the city’s financials: In the upcoming fiscal year, LCF expects to bring in a total of $13.863 million and to have $13.118 million in expenses, leaving a balance of $745,550 for council consideration items. Continue reading “LCF Defines Budget; Reserves to Slip in 2017-18”

LCUSD Could Feel State Education Financial Squeeze

La Cañada Unified School District officials took a hard look last week at a tightening financial outlook.
Chief Business and Operations Officer Mark Evans warned that it appears several years of an unprecedented boost in statewide education funding will end in 2017-18. That financial influx was an effort, Evans said, to “close the gap,” or to get districts back to the level of funding they had before the 2008 recession. But those levels did not account for technology modernization expenses. Continue reading “LCUSD Could Feel State Education Financial Squeeze”