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County Board of Supervisors to discuss long-term financial sustainability for fiscal year

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Posted at 1:37 PM, Feb 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-24 16:37:27-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — In August 2019 the county announced the end of a four-year fiscal emergency. On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors will discuss how to ensure long-term fiscal sustainability and maintain a healthy General Fund during the fiscal year 2020-21.

The County Administrative Office (CAO) is set to commence the annual budget planning process for the fiscal ear by preparing a preliminary financial forecast and proposed net General Fund contribution guideline for departments to follow. This report will include forecasts for major budget components and development.

According to the CAO, the current guideline takes into account that discretionary revenue growth is not enough to keep pace with rising costs of labor and social service programs, as well as the demand for greater investment in law enforcement, homelessness and economic development.

During the latest FY, the CAO asks the board prioritize careful planning.

The end of the budget crisis in FY 2019-20 marked the end of a four-year deficit mitigation strategy enacted to manage property tax declines that began in FY 2016-17. To bridge the budget gap during that time, General Fund departments were force to reduce funds by a total of $34.4 million and endure a $54 million loss in one-time resources.

The primary focuses of the current fiscal year are:

  • State and federal fiscal actions that will increase or decrease county costs or revenues
  • The amount of increase /decrease in the county's assessed valuation and property taxes
  • The status of the current year's budget and year-end fund balances carried forward to the next fiscal period
  • Known, quantifiable changes in local program costs and revenues.

The CAO said the elements must be evaluated and carefully monitored before the county can establish a plan for developing next year's budget.

The report will be given to the county Board of Supervisors during the Tuesday morning meeting. The meeting begins at 9 a.m. at 1115 Truxtun Avenue.

  • To read the full proposed budget development report, see below: