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Santa Clara County Adopts Budget for 2024-25

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Santa Clara County’s Board of Supervisors has approved a budget for 2024-25 that will help close the deficit and anchor core services. This week, the Board of Supervisors reviewed and adopted the Fiscal Year 2024-25 Budget, greenlighting a set of resourceful proposals across the organization to fully close the deficit with ongoing solutions. This means the County not only balanced the budget this year but was also able to prevent any of the current shortfalls from rolling into the next fiscal calendar, which is already forecast to be a tough year.

“We are facing trickle-down impacts from the state and federal levels, along with a private sector actor that is pushing its social responsibilities to the local government. But, unlike a for-profit business, we must find a way to operate that maintains our commitment and support for the residents who need us most,” said County Executive James R. Williams. “During difficult times like these, organizations like ours have to show perseverance and ingenuity so we can protect the safety net services that hold our community together.”

“While I am relieved that we have been able to deliver a balanced budget that maintains our service levels for the most vulnerable residents, secure our core budget priorities and protect the jobs of county employees, I don’t believe we are out of the woods,” said Board President and District 4 Supervisor Susan Ellenberg. “The real test will be in the coming years, so our continued prudence and collaboration in how we steward our residents’ tax dollars will be critical.”

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Over the next year, the County is bracing for a number of continuing challenges, including the State cuts to County programs in the face of its multi-billion-dollar structural deficit. Additionally, the County expects to absorb impacts from the proposed closure of trauma and downgrading of stroke and STEMI (heart attack) services at Regional Medical Center in East San José in August.

Despite those challenges, for the fiscal year that begins July 1, the $12.5 billion budget maintains critical core services and public programs and in some cases, expands services in key areas aligning with the Board’s policy priorities to:

  • Expand behavioral and medical care access and quality;
  • Increase access to housing;
  • Strengthen community safety and reform criminal justice;
  • Enhance support for children and families; and
  • Promote sustainability, adapt to climate change, and protect natural resources.

The budget is the result of long, hard work by County employees. County of Santa Clara leaders asked the organization’s departments to make cuts to close the $250 million deficit while maintaining critical services for the community. Those departments delivered.

“We want to thank administration and department staff for a balanced budget that reflects our values and sustains vital community services,” said Board Vice President and District 3 Supervisor Otto Lee. “Behavioral health remains a top priority, along with investing in mobile dental services for veterans. As a County, we have preserved key services and programs, including staffing multilingual election specialists and maintaining the Public Defender’s outreach team. I’m grateful for the investments in these services, which reflect the County’s ongoing commitment to our communities.”

What the 2024-25 Santa Clara County Budget Entails

The bulk of the County’s services will continue to be provided in the same way in a wide range of areas, such as public safety and justice, health care, housing, and other essential safety net services. Additionally, a variety of capital projects are included in this budget, including $40 million for seismic improvements to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and $60 million for Valley Health Center San José, which will provide a variety of healthcare services to the community.

Some other notable investments in the Fiscal Year 2024-25 Budget include:

  • Expanding access to critically needed mental health services by reallocating General Fund resources and staff and leveraging federal and state funding in a more effective manner.
  • Funding positions in Santa Clara Valley Healthcare and the Office of the District Attorney to expand certain services, including in Morgan Hill, which will also be home to the South County Child Advocacy Center.
  • Continuing to build new permanent housing projects, invest in rapid rehousing programs, and play a critical regional leadership role addressing homelessness under the leadership of the Office of Supportive Housing, which is now becoming a standalone department.
  • Allocating new funding for priorities such as agricultural worker housing.
  • Targeting investments to expand sustainability projects and programs that will yield long-term fiscal savings to the County while fulfilling civic duty to address the global climate change crisis.
  • Proactively advancing equity and inclusion across all operations, policy, and budget decisions.
  • Laying the foundation for longer-term, transformational strategies currently in development, such as the design and implementation of a Countywide Racial Equity Strategic Roadmap.

“Departments across the organization really stepped up to the challenge this year, paving the way for the Board of Supervisors and the County Executive to develop and adopt a balanced and responsible budget,” said County Budget Director Greg Iturria. “I’m incredibly proud of this work, which continues to fund critical core services while acknowledging and preparing us for the fiscal challenges of this year and those to come.”

More details on priorities and investments are available in the Fiscal Year 2024-25 Recommended Budget, which is published with an open data portal on the County’s website. In the fall, the County will publish the Fiscal Year 2024-25 Adopted Budget that was approved this month.

Previous Post:
Santa Clara County Budget (22/23) Aims To Expand Safety Nets And Address Disparities

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