Local Politics

Deep cuts loom as Santa Barbara County budget hearings begin

Funding gap exceeds $30 million

Santa Barbara County budget hearings...

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The Santa Barbara County budget hearings this week are expected to be painful, across the board.

The county says it has to tighten up a gap of over $30 million.

One of the key issues is the rising costs of salaries, benefits, and pensions.

Department heads are standing before the Board of Supervisors making their case depending on the preliminary prognosis for their funds. It could be a costly time for social services and library operations, on the first reduction cycle, but that doesn't mean critical areas like the Sheriff's department will be completely spared.

For example, Sheriff Bill Brown has said, funding cuts to his budget could mean the closure of the north county jail operations and deputies would have to make the time consuming drive to Goleta for bookings.

The budget has to be finalized by July 1.

The hearings continue this week. P

ublic comments are taken on each department presentations.




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