Supes OK surplus spending, deficit to increase

Next year’s projected deficit has increased by nearly $30 million after the Board of Supervisors approved spending a portion of this budget year’s surplus, according to a city report.

The surplus for the end of this budget year decreased from $126.6 million to $98.41 million and the projected deficit for next year grew from $25.4 million to $54.7 million, according to the Office of the Controller’s nine-month budget report released this month.

The spending proposals have strained relations between Mayor Gavin Newsom and the Board of Supervisors. Newsom, who has to submit a balanced city budget to the board by June 1, has accused board members of playing politics with the fiscal health of The City during an election year.

The Board of Supervisors last week approved Supervisor Chris Daly’s proposal to spend $28 million of this year’s surplus on affordable housing needs, and on Tuesday voted 8-2 to approve spending $5 million of the surplus on The City’s Down Payment Assistance Loan Program, a proposal submitted by Supervisor Gerardo Sandoval.

Not included in the Controller’s report is another Daly proposal to spend $20 million of the surplus on programs related to children, families, seniors and the disabled. Today, the Board of Supervisors Budget Committee votes on that proposal.

“The board’s irresponsible spending is bringing us deeper and deeper into the red,” Newsom spokesman Nathan Ballard said on Monday. It remains unclear whether Newsom will veto the surplus spending proposals.

“There’s enough good news in the current year that the one-time appropriation for affordable housing can easily be accommodated without creating a budget problem,” Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin said on Tuesday.

Peskin, however, suggested that the board may have reached its surplus-spending limit. When asked about Daly’s $20 million proposal, Peskin said, “I have some concerns about that. But we’ll see what happens. It’s getting very close to the June 1 budget submission.”

Daly, however, said that “when it comes to supporting struggling families to promote diversity in San Francisco, there is no time like the present.” He said the Mayor’s Office should support it and “build it in” to Newsom’s budget proposal.

jsabatini@examiner.com


E-mail your city officials:

Mayor: Gavin Newsom

Supervisors: Jake McGoldrick – District 1; Michela Alioto-Pier – District 2; Aaron Peskin – District 3; Ed Jew – District 4; Ross Mirkarimi – District 5; Chris Daly – District 6; Sean Elsbernd – District 7; Bevan Dufty – District 8; Tom Ammiano – District 9; Sophie Maxwell – District 10; Gerardo Sandoval – District 11

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