Stanislaus County Considers Billion-Dollar Budget

Courtesy of Steven Gaffney Architecture, Inc.|

Stanislaus County may see its final 2013-2014 budget increase 6 percent over last year's budget and 3.2 percent from earlier proposals to more than $1 billion, per a preliminary final budget released Friday.

The increased spending comes as the federal government has allocated additional funding for social services programs, and the state has freed up more funding to address local impacts of public safety realignment.

“I am pleased the financial state of our county is showing modest signs of improvement,” said Stan Risen, Interim Chief Executive Officer for Stanislaus County. “We are committed to returning the County to financial strength through sound fiscal policy and prudent management decisions.”

The new budget would also add 13 employees to the county payroll, bringing Stanislaus County's total number of allocated employees to 3,920. Most of the new positions are funded by the increased revenues, the county says.

The 13 positions come in addition to 10 created since last year's budget was adopted. The total number of county employees still remains 12 percent below the all-time high of 4,459, achieved in fiscal year 2008-2009.

“Even though we are seeing an increase in appropriations in areas receiving additional state or federal revenue, we are moving forward in a conservative way,” Risen said.

Though the proposed final county budget crests $1 billion, Stanislaus County's discretionary budget is just $156 million, unchanged from the June's adopted proposed budget. The figure is above the seven-year low of $141 million, from the 2009-2010 fiscal year, but below the historical high of $181 million, achieved in the 2007-2008 fiscal year.

The Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors will consider adopting the budget during a 9:05 a.m. Sept. 9 meeting, which will be held in the basement chambers of 1010 Tenth St., Modesto.

The recommended county budget can be reviewed at the Board of Supervisors Office of the County of Stanislaus, 1010 10th St. Ste. 6500, Modesto, at any county library, or online at www.stancounty.com/budget/.

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