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Los Angeles Budget Finalized... Kinda

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Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa yesterday signed off on the $7.01 billion Los Angeles budget for the next fiscal year that begins on July 1st. What does that mean? Well, "with all the financial uncertainties in the local economy, more review of the budget is expected in coming weeks," the Daily News explains. So, yeah, the budget is signed, but there is still a ways to go.

A few budget related key points include:

  • Most all departments were asked to "share the sacrifice" with 10 to 30 percent spending cuts.
  • The LAPD's budget for hiring new officers beyond the 400 to be replaced through attrition this year was frozen.
  • A uncertain number of layoffs (we've heard between 1,200 and 3,000) are looming in addition to a high number of furlough days for civilian employees who don't get sacked. Those furlough days could equal a 10% cut in salary.
  • Because the City Council shot down proposals to privatize parking garages and meters (an idea modeled after Chicago's failed deal), as well some other fund transfers, Villaraigosa says more layoffs and department cuts could come down the line to fill a $95 million gap. He may also take money from the city's reserve and hand it over to public safety initiatives.

The city faced a $529 million deficit when preparing the budget this year, but next year, the deficit could be as high as a billion dollars, officials predict.