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City budget analyst calls for a “time-out”

This week, the city of San Diego starts the painstaking process of producing its first accurate budget in a long time. The city council's new "independent budget analyst" will set the stage for an austere year ahead. KPBS reporter, Alison St John has more.

Andrea Tevlin, San Diego city council's new budget analyst, has collected eight different sets of budget priorities from the eight city council members, and she'll integrate those into a report to the mayor. Some council members say they hope to restore services cut in recent years, like community police or library and pool hours. But Tevelin says she will recommend a "time out" for the next fiscal year.

Tevlin: "Time out" does not mean not moving forward- time out means don't focus on new expenditures. It's moving forward in that we're going to get this budget accurate and true."

Tevelin says she has serious concerns if it's viability to produce a comprehensive proposed budget for 2007, given the lack of clear figures from last year, and the need to work out how the new government structure will actually work. She says first the city needs answers to questions like "how big is the pension deficit really?, and which delayed maintenance projects simply cannot be postponed any longer. Alison St John, KPBS news.

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