After slashing staff, police and programs, the City of Hercules is still more than $2 million short this fiscal year.
City Manager Steve Duran announced the deficit, which will be discussed in greater detail at an upcoming workshop, at Tuesday's City Council meeting.
"We have a sever fiscal crisis," Duran said. In the last year, the city reduced its budget by about a third -- $6 million. City staff levels have been cut almost in half. The police department went from 30 to 20 sworn officers through layoffs and attrition. "It doesn’t get any thinner than that," said Duran, who did not say how the city will deal with the additional $2.3 million that must be trimmed from the fiscal year 2012-13 budget.
"I’m not looking forward to the menu. I’m just not sure where the cuts are going to be," said Vice Mayor John Delgado.
A budget workshop to discuss the current year's budget, the deficit and its implication, was tentatively scheduled for next week. Details are to come. The budget needs to be reviewed and adopted by June 26, Duran said.
"A $2 million in deficit is not very cheery news but at least we have a starting point," said Councilwoman Myrna de Vera."
7:30, PUBLIC COMMENT
Several Redwood Road residents speak up about pending construction in their neighborhood (please email firstname.lastname@example.org with more information on this subject).
Resident and former Hercules Planning Commissioner Sherry McCoy, Concerned to see Victoria Crescent and Parcel C on the closed session agenda. Wants council to speak more openly with the public.
Resident and Realtor Jojo Soriano, "I believe that we can support retail in our city." Plugs website, Hercules2020.com, which is aimed at getting an Apple store to open in Hercules.
Resident Margie Liberty, Wants to talk about Grey Wolves. The Department of Fish and Game proposes to name Gray Wolves as an endangered species, protecting them in California. "I am personally going to be fighting this with everything I can...Wolves are predators. They bring disease..." Liberty said.
Jo-Ellen Marcotti, Speaks about the Hercules Emergency Library Project As of April 30, we have raised $50,087. "You know we're not going away and we have a lot of things planned for this year -- a lot of events...and I hope you will continue to support us."
Senior Center member Ms. Han, Concerned about Measure N and O. Wants to make sure money made, if the measures pass, goes to the police department.
Resident Chris Tallerico, Endorses Measures O. Directs residents to SaveHerculesPD.org. "I hope that you do not touch public safety any futher. You have decimated (police)."
CITY MANAGER REPORTS AND RESOLUTIONS
1. Receive Report Regarding The Draft FY 2012-2013 City Of Hercules Budget.
-The city is looking at more than a $2 million deficit for the 2012/13 fiscal year.
2. Receive Report And Discuss Recommendation Of The Legal Ad Hoc Committee
Regarding A Nepotism and Cronyism Ordnance.
3. Conduct Discussion Regarding Whether Or Not The Hercules City Council Should Endorse Any Tax Measures Sponsored By Entities Other Than The City.
-The council unanimously decided against endorsing any measures.