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County budget hearings to start Monday

Public hearings on the county's proposed $5.06 billion budget for the upcoming fiscal year are scheduled to begin Monday.

The budget hearings will cover planned spending for Fiscal Year 2014-15, which begins July 1, and will include enterprise funds, the Community Enhancement Program, Air Pollution Control District, county service areas, permanent road divisions, the Flood Control District, recreation and park districts, lighting and maintenance districts, Sanitation District and the In-Home Supportive Services Public Authority. It will also cover spending planned by the county's redevelopment successor agency.

The hearings are expected to last at least three days, with the community enhancement presentations set to begin at 9 a.m. Monday and last through the day, continuing Tuesday. Public comment will be given Wednesday. The hearings may continue day-to-day until 5 p.m. on June 18, the deadline for the Clerk of the Board to receive change letter requests from the Board of Supervisors and chief administrative officer.

Members of the public can also submit written testimony by the same deadline to the Clerk of the Board.

"The recommended budget maintains the county’s commitment to long-term planning and fiscal stability," county Chief Administrative Officer Helen Robbins-Mey wrote in support of her proposed budget to the Board of Supervisors.

The 2014-15 budget makes up half of the CAO Recommended Operational Plan, which presented a proposed balanced budget of $5.06 billion for the upcoming fiscal year and an unofficial outline for spending in the following fiscal year, 2015-16. The $5.06 billion represents a 1.6 percent increase from the current fiscal year’s adopted budget of $4.98 billion.

County spokesman Michael Workman said improved conditions for revenue streams have brought a sense of relief in preparing the budget, which proposes 17,037 staff years, up from 16,627.

The hearings will be held in Room 310 at the County Administration Center, 1600 Pacific Highway, in downtown San Diego.

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