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San Diego Facing $28 Million Budget Gap

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Mayor Jerry Sanders says ballooning pension payments and lagging tax revenue mean the city is spending $28 million more than it’s taking in, but he says the city was right in its conservative approach.

— San Diego is facing another huge budget gap. Mayor Jerry Sanders says ballooning pension payments and lagging tax revenue mean the city is spending $28 million more than it’s taking in.

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City of San Diego Proposed 2011 Budget

City of San Diego Proposed 2011 Budget

Proposed 2011 budget for the City of San Diego

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The city had been operating under an 18-month-budget it adopted last December. The mayor and city council approve a spending plan that closed a $179 million gap. Since then, San Diego’s contribution to its pension plan rose to nearly $232 million. Sales and property tax revenues have also fallen. But Sanders says the city was right in its conservative approach.

“I didn’t want to cut any more than we need to,” Sanders said. “I thought we needed to cut that amount. We cut it six months earlier, which I don’t think you’re going to find any other cities have done.”

Sanders says the city will fill the $28 million hole by making changes to its fleet services department and restructuring its pension payments among other things. He says services won’t be impacted. A recent survey by the Independent Budget Analyst found residents think outsourcing services is the best way to deal with the city’s budget deficit.

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